KYW Medical Report Sponsored By Independence Blue Cross

By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – When we think of cancer in women we probably think about breast cancer and there is no doubt that breast cancer occurs often and despite tremendous advances in treatment it can be a killer. But, there is another form of cancer that occurs in women that is often overlooked. Ovarian cancer causes more deaths than any gynecologic cancer.

One of the reasons is that it is very difficult to detect it early. There are certain things that put a woman at greater risk and they include having a family history of ovarian cancer, being obese, using fertility drugs and being older, especially after menopause.

There are inherited genes associated with breast cancer that also increase the risk of ovarian cancer. The genes are brca1 and brca2.