01/03/2018 10:05 GMT

Ovarian Cancer Shortens Life By Two Decades, Do You Know The Symptoms?

Needing to urinate more frequently is one common sign.

Ovarian cancer shortens a woman’s life by almost two decades, a charity has said.

Analysis by Ovarian Cancer Action examined data from the Global Health Data Exchange and compared the age women died of ovarian cancer to the average life expectancy of women in that country.

It found that across England, Wales and Scotland, the disease shortens a woman’s life by an average of 19 years.

The figure has been released to mark the start of ovarian cancer awareness month throughout March. The charity said that across the UK a woman dies from ovarian cancer every two hours.

KatarzynaBialasiewicz via Getty Images

The charity added that while symptom awareness is vital, there must also be an emphasis on earlier detection of the disease.

Symptoms of ovarian cancer can include stomach pain, bloating, feeling full more quickly, and needing to wee more frequently

The research charity hopes to develop a screening tool and replicate the success of cervical screening through its new fundraising campaign.

Katherine Taylor, chief executive of Ovarian Cancer Action, said: “When a woman is diagnosed with ovarian cancer, the odds are stacked against her. Recurrence is high and survival rates are poor; no woman should live in fear of either.

“There is currently no screening tool for ovarian cancer and we want to change that. Our scientists want to develop a screening tool that will detect pre-cancerous cells that can be treated before they develop into ovarian cancer.

“We only have to look at the success of cervical screening to understand that early detection saves lives. To be clear, cervical screening does not detect ovarian cancer – which is why we are determined to develop a similar process to prevent women developing ovarian cancer. Investing in medical research will give future generations more time with the ones they love.”