STUDY SUGGESTS THAT DOCTORS MAY BE CLOSER TO GOAL LINE IN OVARIAN CANCER EARLY DETECTION CHALLENGE AND A VIDEO ABOUT OVARIAN CA
Some cancer is easier to detect than others. Ovarian cancer has a reputation for being opaque to early detection. But perhaps now, that is changing with the release of an optimistic interim report on earlier detection of ovarian cancer, "We have now demonstrated we can pick up the vast majority of women with ovarian cancer earlier than they would have otherwise been detected and before they have symptoms,” said Dr. Ian Jacobs, director of the Institute for Women’s Health at University College London."
As I have written in Purple Medical Blog previously, "A problem with ovarian cancer is that it may not be detected until an advanced stage. In general, the earlier a cancer is detected the easier it is to treat. Early detection is especially important for ovarian cancer. Although many people have heard of CA 125 as a test for ovarian cancer detection, it has not been enough to detect ovarian cancer early. CA 125 is more often used as a test to follow the progress of treatment. So the search has been on for ways to detect ovarian cancer at an early stage".
Watch Video About Ovarian Cancer Click the Arrow
Talking about a study result noted in Lancet Oncology "We have now demonstrated we can pick up the vast majority of women with ovarian cancer earlier than they would have otherwise been detected and before they have symptoms,” said Dr. Ian Jacobs, director of the Institute for Women’s Health at University College London, and director of the trial, “and that a good proportion of those women have earlier stage disease than we would normally expect them to have."
As the study's web site points out ,"Large studies performed by our research team and other international teams during the last decade have developed and refined two methods of screening. One method uses ultrasound scanning, similar to the scanning used in pregnancy, to check for any enlargement or abnormality of the ovaries. Ultrasound is currently widely used for diagnosing ovarian cancer in women with symptoms. It has been shown that the ultrasound test can be abnormal in the early stage of many ovarian cancers. This trial will use a method of ultrasound scanning called "transvaginal scan" whereby a probe is inserted into the vagina to see the ovaries. This method of scanning gives a much clearer picture of the ovaries than a transabdominal scan, where the probe is placed on the abdomen. The second method involves a blood test to measure a substance called CA 125. Most women who develop ovarian cancer have high levels of the protein called CA125 in their blood. The CA125 test is therefore currently used to diagnose ovarian cancer in women with symptoms and to monitor women after treatment. It has been shown that the CA125 test can be elevated in the early stage of many ovarian cancers. In addition, the research team believes that it may be possible to identify those women with early ovarian cancer where the CA125 blood test is not elevated by looking for changes i.e. increases in a woman's blood results over time".
"Using these tests it seems likely that over 80% of women with ovarian cancer can be identified before they have symptoms. This current very large trial will answer the question whether early detection of ovarian cancer, using these tests can save the lives of women who have ovarian cancer".