What is Germ Cell Ovarian Cancer?
Germ cell ovarian cancer is cancer in which benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancerous) growths are developed in the germ cells (eggs) of the female’s ovaries. Germ cell ovarian cancer mostly develops in teenage girls and younger women. Ovaries are part of the female reproductive system. There are two ovaries in the female reproductive system which are attached by the fallopian tubes with the uterus. In the ovaries, eggs are formed and they secrete female hormones.
These are rare tumours and make only 2% of all ovarian cancers. Teenage girls and younger women are at a higher risk of developing germ cell ovarian cancer. The risk of development of germ cell ovarian cancer becomes minimum after the menopause (cessation of menstruation at the age of 45) or in women older than 60 years. The annual frequency of occurrence of germ cell cancer is 1/200000 females in Europe.
Disease Etiology (Cause)
There is no exact well-known cause. However, there is an association between the nervous, urinary, and reproductive system birth defects and in the development of germ cell ovarian cancer. Certain genetic mutations and chromosomal disorders are also responsible for the development of germ cell ovarian cancer.
Signs and Symptoms
In most cases, ovarian germ cell tumour shows no symptoms at earlier stages. When it became symptomatic it shows the following signs and symptoms. These are;
- Swelling or lump in the abdomen or pelvic region
- Pain, pressure or feeling of fullness in the abdomen(belly)
- Inter-menstrual (Irregular vaginal bleeding between two menstrual cycles) or post-menopausal vaginal bleeding.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Following diagnostic tests and procedures can be used to make the diagnosis. These are
- Complete blood count ( CBC)
- Serum tumour markers
- Imaging techniques like ultrasonography (USG), CT-scan, MRI, and X-Ray to detect the site, size, and extent of the tumour.
- Pelvic examination through per- speculum examination of the vagina, cervix, and ovaries. A speculum is a gynecological instrument used to visualize the vaginal wall, cervix, uterus, and ovaries to detect any abnormality.
Surgery is the most common and effective treatment for ovarian germ cell cancer or tumour. Unilateral Salpingoophorectomy is the surgical procedure in which the affected ovary is removed along with its fallopian tube.
What Support can we Give for Germ Cell Ovarian Cancer?
Germ Cell Ovarian Cancer is a rare cancer, meaning it is not as well known as other forms of cancer. Without a Ribbon is an Australian organisation that provides support for individuals who suffer from rare cancers. So, we provide a designated platform for Warriors to obtain information specific to their Rare Cancer. We also provide annual opportunities for our Warriors to meet and learn from each other. If you suffer from rare cancer such as Germ Cell Ovarian Cancer, we can help and support you through your journey thanks to the generous donations we receive. Click the link below to sign up and become a Warrior today!
You can help us with your donation:
Without a Ribbon is a charity that works hard to aid those who suffer from rare cancers. You can help our cause in a variety of ways:
Donations — Without a Ribbon is grateful when we receive every donation. Giving to Without a Ribbon helps us to provide ongoing support, organise the annual gathering and subsidise the costs of our Warriors attending these conferences.
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