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Lives Lost In Failure To Spot Ovarian Cancer

New research shows that many cases of ovarian cancer are being misdiagnosed by women and GPs causing many cases to be identified too late to treat. The result is that many women are dying unnecessarily. The ovarian cancer charity Target Ovarian Cancer has released new data that shows just how misunderstood the symptoms of ovarian cancer are.

According to the ovarian cancer charity Target Ovarian Cancer awareness of key symptoms is still too low. Data collected from the charity reveals that 1 in 5 people know that bloating is one of the symptoms. Two-thirds know tummy pain, is a symptom and hardly anyone knows that feeling full quickly or needing to wee more urgently can be symptoms of ovarian cancer.

When symptoms are ignored or passed off as more common conditions like IBS, ovarian cancer has time to advance before it is found. If caught early, it’s much more treatable.

A new report from The Times also reveals that ‘many women report having their symptoms dismissed by GPs, resulting in the cancer being too far advanced to treat. There are about 7,500 new ovarian cancer cases in Britain every year. Figures show that awareness of warning signs of the disease is “disappointingly low” and they are often mistaken for common conditions such as cystitis or irritable bowel syndrome.’

Annwen Jones OBE, Chief Executive of Target Ovarian Cancer, said: “These figures are incredibly disappointing. We know we’ve shifted the dial in the past 10 years, through the dedication of thousands of Target Ovarian Cancer’s campaigners. But it is not enough. Knowing the symptoms is crucial for everyone. We need to make sustained and large-scale government-backed symptoms campaigns a reality.”

Katy Stephenson, 47, from Bury St Edmunds, was diagnosed with early-stage ovarian last year. She said:v”I had been experiencing symptoms like bloating and needing to wee more urgently for a few months, but I’d put it down to being peri-menopausal. I had a fluke diagnosis when I was admitted to hospital with appendicitis. If that hadn’t happened, the cancer probably would have spread, and I hate to think about what would have happened. I was actually told that I wouldn’t have symptoms in the early stages of ovarian cancer – but I did. I want everyone to know the symptoms of ovarian cancer. The only person that will catch them is you, so be aware of your own body, speak to a GP. And don’t be afraid to mention ovarian cancer if you’re worried.”

Dr Victoria Barber, a GP in Northamptonshire and advocate for early diagnosis of ovarian cancer in the primary care community said: “Symptoms do appear early on in ovarian cancer, and your GP wants to hear from you if you’re experiencing any of them, if they are new for you and if they do not go away. Similarly, it’s vital that GPs are knowledgeable on ovarian cancer and know how to advise patients who have concerns. Target Ovarian Cancer has a GP education programme that can help you do this.”

Ovarian Cancer Misdiagnosis Claims

At Jefferies, we have a specialist team of medical negligence solicitors who are experienced in dealing with cancer misdiagnosis claims. We understand how difficult and emotional the situation can be, which is why we’ll help you every step of the way. To begin with, we will need to take some initial details regarding your case and circumstances.

If you think you might have a claim for ovarian cancer misdiagnosis, please contact us for informal advice. We operate on a No Win No Fee basis.

Start your compensation claim with Jefferies Solicitors today. You can either call us free on 0800 342 3206 or enquire online and one of our team will be in touch with you to discuss your potential personal injury claim.