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diagnosing ovarian ca

Posts: 7
Joined: Mar 2004

I've had pain in my left pelvic groin area on & off for 4 years. I also have had constipation. I'm worried about having ovarian ca as my mothers mom had it at age 43. Recently, the pain is more pronounced as well as the constipation. I have some cramping on my left leg as well. Since I am now newly pregnant (1st baby at 41), I suppose this can be due to my pregnancy in part. I've had ultrasounds & my ovaries look okay. I don't know if there is anything else I can do to make sure it's not cancer. Any suggestions? My cousin was just diagnosed at 45 with advanced ovarian ca so it is really on my mind now. It seems as though there is no good test to detect it early. Any suggestions appreciated. My prayers are with all of you, and your challenges that lie ahead.

Posts: 1982
Joined: May 2003

Congratulations on your pregnancy! However, I understand your concerns. My suggestions come from my OVCA Stage 1C experience these last 4 years. I would first request a CA125 blood test. If you are familiar with this,it is really only a marker. Since you have probably not had one, they have no baseline test to determine what is normal for you. But normal range is 0-35. Keep in mind that an elevated level can mean a variety of things other than cancer (stress, infection, endometriosis, etc.). Given your family history I would request also a genetic test for BRCA2 (I believe that is the test for the OVCA gene). CT scans can be done (of course your baby's safety is a factor). When I have my CT scans done every three months I have triple contrast (drinkable, IV, and via enema). My doctor wants me to be glowing like a nuclear plant! Anyway, these are just some suggestions. I hope it helps. I had no symptoms, but my CA125 was 48 at my yearly physical. Given my endometriosis history, my doctor said it could be that, but sent me to an oncologist just in case. Three months later I had a total hysterctomy, omentum removal, lymph node removal, 6 rounds of heavy chemo. Today I have no sign of cancer, although I know it will always be in the back of my mind. But I take one day at a time. I recommend that for your also. But definitely follow-up with the physican and don't stop till you get an answer that you are totally satisfied with.

I wish you the best and I will certainly be praying for you, your baby and your family. Please keep us informed. This is the best place you can come to for info and support and lots of HUGS!
God Bless You!

Posts: 7
Joined: Mar 2004

Thanks for your support. I'll definitely see if I can get a CA125. This is very hard to mention to the doc as I'm so excited by the pregnancy and don't want to bring anything as scary as this up. Thank you for sharing your story with me. My prayers are with you also.

Posts: 650
Joined: Mar 2003

Hi seabiscuit, Congratulations! Because pregnancy is something that can elevate CA-125 levels, the test is not going to be a good indicator of ovarian cancer.

It's not a good indicator for early stage ovarian cancer, being effective in only 50% of Stage 1 or 2 ovarian cancer.

I hope everything goes well for you and your baby!

Posts: 7
Joined: Mar 2004

Thanks. I think I will have to pray that I don't have it, because there isn't much they can do to diagnosis it now. I don't think surgery is an option & I'd hate myself if I did anything to harm the baby (especially if it wasn't ovarian ca). It's a bummer that ultrasounds don't always show it in time. Has anyone had low grade temps with their ca? I keep getting these temperatures without an elevated WBC or sign of infection & it worries me also.

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