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What are the signs of ovarian cancer?

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Diana Dors was England’s answer to Marilyn Monroe. The sassy siren’s meteoric rise was unheard of at the time. From humble beginnings in Swindon, she went on to take Hollywood by storm. However, her on-screen glamour belied a tumultuous private life that ultimately ended in tragedy.

Dors had a series of stormy marriages before her life was tragically cut short from ovarian cancer.

Her final marriage, to Alan Lake, was the darkest chapter in her life. The pair fell in love, metronidazole erythema married within a few months and had a son, Jason, a year later.

Their marriage was tempestuous. Lake was an alcoholic and their relationship was rocked when Dors fell pregnant in 1975, aged 43, and suffered a miscarriage.

In 1982 she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer which would kill her on May 4, 1984.

The events that followed were equally as tragic. Lake was wracked with grief following his wife’s untimely death.

Just five months later, Lake called his friend, comedian Freddie Starr.

“I can’t go on” he told him. He then killed himself with a shotgun.

Devastation would strike again in 2019. Shortly after his 50th birthday, Dors’ son, Jason, was found dead at his flat.

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The late star’s son was vocal about his struggles with alcoholism in the years prior to his death.

Ovarian cancer – signs to spot

The symptoms of ovarian cancer are not always obvious.

According to the NHS, symptoms of ovarian cancer include frequently (roughly 12 or more times a month) having a swollen tummy or feeling bloated.

Other signs include:

  • Pain or tenderness in your tummy or the area between the hips (pelvis)
  • No appetite or feeling full quickly after eating
  • An urgent need to pee or needing to pee more often.

Are you at risk?

There are some factors that can increase your risk of developing ovarian cancer.

Having one or more risk factors doesn’t mean that you will definitely get ovarian cancer.

As with most cancers, ovarian cancer becomes more common as you get older.

Cancer Research UK explains: “The risk of ovarian cancer increases steeply from around 45 years. And is greatest in those aged between 75 and 79 years.”

Another risk factor you cannot modify is genes. “Between five and 15 out of 100 ovarian cancers (5 to 15 percent) are caused by an inherited faulty gene,” warns Cancer Research UK.

There are risk factors of ovarian cancer you can modify too.

According to the NHS, your risk is higher if you have never used any hormonal contraception, such as the pill or an implant.

Other modifiable risk factors include:

  • Smoking
  • Being overweight.

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