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Consensus statement on ovarian cancer aims to settle dispute over symptoms

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.a2007 (Published 07 October 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a2007
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. 1London

    A UK consensus group has drawn up a list of symptoms that commonly occur in women who later receive a diagnosis of ovarian cancer. The group calls for research into the association between recognition of the symptoms, early referral, and outcomes, as part of efforts to resolve controversy over whether it is worthwhile to raise awareness of the disease.

    In a debate in the Times in April, Ian Jacobs, director of the University College London Institute for Women’s Health and a consultant gynaecologist and oncologist at University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, warned that campaigns to raise awareness of the symptoms of ovarian cancer could do more harm than good, because the symptoms are vague and common among women (www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/health/expert_advice/article3745082.ece).

    To help clarify the issue a group of researchers, doctors, and charities working in ovarian cancer have developed a consensus statement to provide up to date, evidence based guidance on the signs and symptoms …

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