What are the symptoms?

Ovarian cancer has four main symptoms:

  • Persistent stomach pain
  • Persistent bloating
  • Difficulty eating/feeling full more quickly
  • Needing to wee more frequently

These can also be symptoms of other, less serious, conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, ovarian cysts and polycystic ovary syndrome so if you’re experiencing them it doesn’t mean you definitely have ovarian cancer.  To find out more download our booklet: Ovarian Cancer: what you need to know.

Other symptoms that you might notice include: back pain, changes in bowel habits (going more often or a lot less), and extreme tiredness for no obvious reason.

It is worth noting that unlike cervical, bowel and breast cancers, there is still no reliable, effective screening method for ovarian cancer. Ovarian Cancer Action is hoping to change this through funding research into the development of the world's first ovarian cancer screening tool. Find out more about this research

If your symptoms are:

  • Persistent
  • Severe
  • Frequent
  • Out of the ordinary

You should make an appointment to see your GP as soon as possible. Keep a record of what symptoms you are experiencing to take with you. This will help your GP make a speedier diagnosis. You can download our paper symptoms diary or search ‘Ovarian Cancer Action’ in your phone’s app store for a digital version.