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Women and GPs 'unaware' of ovarian cancer symptoms.

Summary: New research published in the BMJ confirms that women are dying because they are not aware of the symptoms of ovarian cancer.

New research published in the British Medical Journal confirms that women are dying because they and their doctors are not aware of the symptoms of ovarian cancer.

The study says that both GPs and patients do not know what to look for, and many women are misdiagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) because the symptoms are so similar.

The charity 'Target Ovarian Cancer' is calling on the Department of Health to spearhead a national campaign to make people more knowledgeable about ovarian cancer symptoms.

The research, by Dr Willie Hamilton, an academic GP at Bristol University, backs up earlier findings by the Target Ovarian Cancer Pathfinder Study, which recently released the results of a survey of 400 GPs nationally and 1000 women nationally.

That showed that lack of awareness and confusion about symptoms of ovarian cancer among both GPs and women was leading to unnecessary delays in diagnosis.

The survey revealed that about eight in ten GPs wrongly think women with early stage ovarian cancer do not have any symptoms, and only 27 per cent knew about the latest Department of Health guidelines on the disease.

Ovarian cancer is the biggest gynaecological cancer killer and, unlike breast cancer, the survival rate has not improved in 30 years.

Independent Television News Limited 2009. All rights reserved.

Independent Television News Limited 2009. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Independent Television News Limited (ITN)
Date:Aug 31, 2009
Words:254
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