What is Ovarian Small Cell Carcinoma?Ovarian Small Cell Carcinoma is a very rare type of ovarian cancer that develops especially in younger women between the age of 10-40 years. This is a high-grade tumour that grows rapidly and can spread to other parts of the body. It is a very rare cancer, accounting for only 1% of all types of ovarian cancer. In 99% of cases, it most often develops in one ovary, but in rare cases, it can affect both ovaries.
What are Ovaries?The ovaries are an important part of the human reproductive system. The ovaries are small glands located on either side of the uterus through a tubular structure called the fallopian tubes. The ovaries produce eggs and hormones in females. These eggs are used for producing offspring.
Disease CausesThere is no well-known cause; However, Certain hereditary and genetic mutations (faulty alterations in the genes) are believed to be responsible for the development of ovarian small cell carcinoma.
Signs and SymptomsA person with small cell carcinoma of the ovary may suffer from the following signs and symptoms.
- Pain or discomfort in the right lower part of the abdomen
- Decrease in the appetite
- Irregular menstruations
- Swelling or lump in the abdomen or pelvic region
- Pain, pressure, or feeling of fullness in the abdomen(belly)
- Bloating (gas) in the abdomen
DiagnosisFollowing 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.