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Ovarian problems?

I'm a 21 year old female that is generally very healthy. I am going on week 3 of abdominal/pelvic pain (sometimes non existent, sometimes excruciating), bloading, no appetite/barely being able to eat without feeling extremely full, and sometimes nausea. My pain started on my right side. I had an ultrasound done that showed two ovarian cysts in my left ovary and right ovary appeared fine. Since then, my pain has been in right side near ovary, left side near ovary and sometimes even in my rib cage on my right side. I've had three times where I can't take a deep breath without feeling stabbing side ache in rib cage. Shortly before this all started happening, I had a 2 week long period (mine usually last about 3 days) and then followed with spotting/pinkish discharge for another week. Doctor said that could just be from my depo shot (birth control) which would be understandable, but i've been on depo for 6 months. Anyway, I've seen my doctor a few times and nothing besides ovarian cysts showed up on my ultrasound (which he didn't seem worried about), blood tests and uranalysis have come back normal. I'm requesting to have a CA125 blood test done which i've read can detect ovarian cancer in early stages. Is that a waste of time since nothing showed on my ultrasound? Am I just being overdramatic? Any other suggestions?
14 Responses
Avatar universal
The CA-125 test is not accurate in diagnosing ovarian cancer. If you do not have a predisposition for ovarian cancer then your lifetime risk is less than 2%. You said he didn't seem worried about the ovarian cysts. Is that because they were functional cysts which are part of the normal menstrual cycle? Those can sometimes hang around causing some symtpoms but almost always resolve within 2 cycles.

Have your periods been normal and pretty much pain-free (except for mild cramping) up to this onset of pain 3 weeks ago? If not, there could be something else going on such as endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), or pelvic congestion syndrome.
Avatar universal
Hi old_before_my_time! Thanks so much for your response. If the CA-125 test isn't accurate for diagnosing ovarian cancer, what is it for? My doctor didn't tell me if they were functional cysts or not. He just said I need another ultrasound in 4-6 weeks. Do they know what kind of cyst it is right away? Also do you know if it's common to have multiple at a time?

Periods have been normal until last month when it lasted 2 weeks and continued with spotting. I haven't had one this month, but they tend to go away with the depo shot so i'm assuming that is what happened because I've had a couple pregnancy tests done at the doctors and at home to be sure.
667078 tn?1316000935
The CA 125 can be accurate if you have Ovarian Cancer, For some women it is not it is like the PSA test for men. Some doctors think they both tests are useless and give too many false positives. That said beside ultra sound and CT there is no way to tell ovarian Cancer unless you do surgery which is not practical.

Do you have problems with your gall bladder?

If you had PCOS you can have multiple cysts. It can also make you nauseated. and make your peroids off. The next step for it is another Ultrasound to see if the cysts resolve themselves. It is not uncommon to lose one cyst and have another crop up.

They could tell from my ultrasound that my cysts were Cancer they look a certain way. I was surprised by this. They had me in surgery by the next week.

I threw up and lost weight because I had a tumor on my rectum. Food could not get through so I threw everything up in the end. I had diaphragm spasms because of the tumors pressing on my diaphragm I could not breath, talk,or move. If a doctor had felt my belly they would have felt the tumors.

Ovarian Cancer usually does not have symptoms until late in the disease. I have the BRCA1 mutation that Angolina Joulie has. My grandmother and aunt dies of ovarian in their 50's. My dad and brother got prostate cancer in their 50's. My cousin got breast cancer in her 40's.  So I was expecting Cancer.

I would definitely push to find out what is wrong. I went six years and did not push. They say I have a fast growing cancer and they would not have found it earlier. I think they could have found it if they had done more ultrasounds and possibly a CA125. My insurance would not pay for the BRCA testing until I had Ovarian Cancer. If my doctors had known that they would have probably done a hysterctomy sooner or at least monitored me more. I was having papsmears and endometrial biopsies and mammograms because I was in a study. I thought it would pick up any cancer but it missed Ovarian.

Yes Ovarian Cancer is rare. But it is also one of the most overlooked diagnoses. If I had your symptoms I would keep pushing. It may turn out to be something totally different than Ovarian.

Alex
Avatar universal
That sounds like a lot to go through :( Thanks for your input Alex!
Avatar universal
The CA-125 test is more useful in assessing efficacy of ovarian cancer treatment than it is in diagnosing it. I believe it is more accurate in diagnosing in POST-menopausal than in PRE-menopausal women. A friend of mine had a very high CA-125 level of 1000 but her ovarian cyst was benign (non-cancerous).

Some women tend to develop ovarian cysts even if they do not have PCOS. It is thought that birth control helps prevent them and shrink them. However, it seems I read that there is no evidence of this. It is possible that some forms of birth control may make you more prone to developing them. Not sure what the medical literature says on that.

But regardless, chances are that these cysts are nothing serious and will likely resolve on their own. Even most cysts that require surgical intervention are benign (non-cancerous).
Avatar universal
Hmm.. Well we don't think my cysts are what is causing everything else, but still can't be sure of that. I had a CA-125 test done and am being referred to a gyneocologist oncologist this Friday. That's relieving that a high result is still nothing to panic over though. Thanks.
Avatar universal
Hmm.. Well we don't think my cysts are what is causing everything else, but still can't be sure of that. I had a CA-125 test done and am being referred to a gyneocologist oncologist this Friday. That's relieving that a high result is still nothing to panic over though. Thanks.
Avatar universal
I hope all is ok.Please update us after test.I have similar problems..
Avatar universal
I hope all is ok.Please update us after test.I have similar problems..
667078 tn?1316000935
I hope the CA 125 is low.

Alex

Avatar universal
Hi All -

My CA125 came back 266.5. I saw the gyn-oncologist today and she didn't seem too worried about my situation at all. I have another ultrasound set up in 3 weeks and another CA125 set up in 4 weeks. My symptoms have gotten better and some are even gone. I still have some bloating and feeling full very quickly and irregular bleeding, but abdominal pain only comes and goes.

Thanks for your concern and will update later for others in similar situations.
667078 tn?1316000935
I hope you are okay. It is good they are doing more tests. I had Cancer for years and if they had done those simple tests they would have found it earlier. You have good doctors.

Alex
Avatar universal
Thanks Alex :)
Avatar universal
Glad to hear your symptoms have improved and hope it continues. Hoping the next tests give you good news!
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