Ovarian cancer has long been called "the silent killer," because its symptoms are often overlooked until the cancer has reached an advanced stage. However, as more women learn about what to watch out for, more cases of ovarian cancer can be detected early, and treated more quickly.

Ovarian cancer symptoms

All women are at risk for ovarian cancer. It's important to be on the look out for any symptoms that are not normal for your body, and symptoms that keep coming back. Pay attention to chronic symptoms such as:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Bloating
  • Difficulty eating
  • Feeling full quickly
  • Frequent urination
  • Pelvic pain
  • Pelvic pressure
  • Urgent need to urinate

These symptoms may or may not happen in combination with other symptoms, such as:

  • Back pain
  • Constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Heartburn
  • Irregular vaginal bleeding
  • Painful Intercourse

If you have a combination of any of these symptoms, talk to your doctor. Main Line Health can help with comprehensive gynecology services that include diagnosis and treatment of ovarian cancer.

Special consideration for your fertility

Your ovaries are an important part of your reproductive system. Located on each side of your uterus, the ovaries are in charge of producing eggs during your reproductive years. When possible, we treat your ovarian cancer using techniques that spare the healthy tissue nearby. We understand that you may want to start a family after you recover from ovarian cancer, so we offer options to help preserve your fertility.

If you are having chemotherapy, radiation or surgery to remove ovarian cancer, you may wish to freeze your eggs in advance. At Main Line Health, we use the latest technique for egg freezing, called vitrification, so you can save your healthy eggs for a future pregnancy. If egg freezing is not an option, you might choose egg donation from someone you know or from an egg bank.

No matter which option you choose, in vitro fertilization will allow a possible future pregnancy when you're ready.

Ovarian Cancer treatment options

Whether your reproductive years have just begun, or you're past menopause, we understand that ovarian cancer is a sensitive subject. We offer personalized care that continues long after you recover. In fact, our specialists follow you over a five-year period after your treatment to ensure you are doing well.

The best treatment for you depends on your age, medical history and the size and location of your tumor. Our goal is to use the least invasive treatment options possible with the best possible results. Your treatment options for ovarian cancer may include:


Chemotherapy is used to fight almost every type of cancer and is part of the comprehensive treatment plan created by our oncologists.

External Radiation Therapy

Radiation therapy uses high-energy waves or particles to destroy cancer cells. New technology allows doctors to focus radiation on very small and specific areas, which kills unhealthy cells and leaves healthy cells unharmed.

Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC)

Hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC), also called heated chemotherapy, may be an option for people with late-stage cancer of the appendix or colon , or in some cases, ovarian or uterine cancer that has spread.


Main Line Health offers hysteroscopy to diagnose and treat conditions of the uterus, including fibroids and abnormal bleeding.

Intensity-Modulated Radiation Therapy

Intensity-modulated radiation therapy, or IMRT, uses sophisticated imaging and software to identify the exact size, shape and location of a tumor and to deliver a precise dose of radiation that conforms to the tumor and leaves surrounding tissue intact.

Laparoscopy for Endometriosis and Ovarian Cysts

If you have endometriosis and ovarian cysts, the experts at Main Line Health can help you find relief with laparoscopic surgery.

Radiation Therapy

Specialists at Main Line Health offer a variety of radiation therapies to help treat cancerous tumors while preserving healthy tissue.

Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy (SBRT)

Offered at only a limited number of hospitals in the area, this technique is designed to deliver radiation therapy with incredible precision to tumors anywhere in the body in five or less treatments. SBRT incorporates new technologies such as variable dose rate and real time tracking to achieve the accuracy needed to deliver this treatment.

Stereotactic Radiosurgery

In spite of its name, stereotactic radiosurgery doesn’t involve surgery at all. It is a radiation treatment often used to target difficult to remove tumors.

Related specialties

Hematology and Blood Disorders

Whether you are fighting cancer or managing a blood disorder, the hematologists and oncologists at Main Line Health offer the comprehensive care you need.

Cancer Care

From diagnosis and throughout treatment, Main Line Health cancer specialists (oncologists) provide compassionate care for you and your loved ones through all stages of cancer treatment.

Women's Health

Discover how Main Line Health provides comprehensive and compassionate care for women in all stages of life.