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Get abdominal and lower back pain. History of osteoarthritis. Worried about ovarian cancer?

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I have some questions regarding abdominal pain. I get occasional lower left abdominal pain that is mild and comes and goes. It is located slightly above the groin area. I also have had lower back pain. I don't always have the two together. The pain gets worse with overuse and exercise and is relieved by rest. Sometimes it will hurt when I bend over or when sitting in a chair. When I stand up and walk the pain gets better. Occasionally I will have some bloating, but it always goes away when I have a bowel movement. I also get gallbladder pain when I eat certain foods. I am very worried about ovarian cancer. I go in yearly for a physical and pelvic exam. My doctor has never noticed anything unusual during the pelvic exam. My bowel movements are normal and I urinate 6-8 times daily. My appetite is good and I don't have any weight loss. I have a history of osteoarthritis, gall bladder pain (Hyda scan showed that the gall bladder does not empty completely), menopause, and high blood pressure.
Could this be ovarian cancer? Do the symptoms of ovarian cancer come and go or does the pain persist and get progressively worse? Could this be related to the osteoarthritis or could it be sciatica or a disc problem in my lower back?
I am very scared. Please advise.
Posted Tue, 23 Jul 2013 in Pregnancy
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 37 minutes later
Thanks for posting your query.
The mild pain in the lower abdomen that you have described is more likely to be due to a muscular pain in the the abdominal wall. Since the pain is intermittent and gets better on walking, it is not likely to be intraperitoneal in origin.
Ovarian cancer is more commonly associated with systemic symptoms like weight loss, weakness, persistent abdominal pain and heaviness, etc. Since your annual pelvic examination has not revealed anything unusual, there is no need to worry.
A mild nerve compression at the level of lower spine may also cause such symptoms. You can do back strengthening exercises under the care of a physiotherapist and see if it improves. Hot fomentation in the area will also help in bringing relief.
To be very sure, you can get an ultrasound scan of the lower abdomen and serum CA-125 levels evaluated under the guidance of your gynecologist.
Hope this answers your query. I will be glad to answer the follow up queries that you have.
Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wishing you good health.
Dr. Rakhi Tayal.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Get abdominal and lower back pain. History of osteoarthritis. Worried about ovarian cancer? 1 hour later
Thank you for your response. I have a few more questions.
I have had 2 children, both natural childbirth and I took birth control pills for 15 years or more. Do these reduce my risk of ovarian cancer? I am menopausal also. Can menopause cause pelvic pain? So, ovarian cancer does not come and go and would get progressively worse over time, is that right?
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 2 hours later
Thanks for writing again.
Taking oral pills do reduce the risk of having an ovarian cancer.
Menopause is not usually associated with pelvic pain unless there is a mild infection in the area. It can also be related to mild ankylosing spondylottic changes of the spine.
The symptoms in case of ovarian cancer are persistent and gradually increase with time with prominent weight loss and loss of appetite.
Hope my answer is helpful.
Do accept my answer in case there are no further queries.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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