5 Symptoms of Fallopian Tube Cancer

May 7th 2016

Abnormal Bleeding

Abnormal vaginal bleeding that is not associated with your menstrual cycle can be a sign of fallopian tube cancer. However, many other factors can also cause this, particularly if you are still menstruating. Women who have gone through menopause and are no longer menstruating should see a doctor as soon as possible if they experience vaginal bleeding for no apparent reason.

Abnormal Discharge

Vaginal discharge is normal, but sudden changes can be a cause for concern. Large amounts of watery discharge may be a symptom of fallopian tube cancer. Sometimes, it can be honey colored or have a faint red tinge. However, sudden changes in vaginal discharge can be symptoms of other infections as well.

Pelvic Pain

Everyone gets cramps or indigestion that causes pain at times, but chronic pain in the pelvis and lower abdomen may be a sign of cancer. This pain is the result of a growing mass, which pushes against the walls of the fallopian tubes and nearby tissues. The pain can be consistent, but it often occurs in spasms or flashes that go away after a few minutes. Some people may experience the sensation as pressure rather than actual pain.

Pelvic Mass

The majority of women with fallopian tube cancer have a lump in their pelvis, which can be felt by hand. A doctor may perform an external or internal exam depending on the size and location of the mass. In later stages, the mass and surrounding inflammation may cause the abdomen to visibly swell.

Other Factors

Although not a symptom, the presence of risk factors may be a reason to consult your doctor. Fallopian tube cancer typically strikes women later in life, with most women being diagnosed between age 60 and 64. However, it can strike earlier, and some women have also been diagnosed into their 80s. Fallopian tube cancer is also associated with other genetic reproductive cancers, including ovarian cancer. A family history of these cancers may indicate a higher risk, as can the presence of the BRCA1 gene mutation.

Conclusion

Fallopian tube cancer is a rare type of gynecological cancer, which means that many women are unaware of the symptoms. It occurs when there is abnormal growth of malignant cells in the fallopian tubes, which are the thin tubes that carry a woman's eggs from her ova to her uterus. Catching this cancer early is key to a good prognosis, so talk to your doctor if you notice any symptoms.

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