Hospital raises awareness of ovarian cancer symptoms

Caroline Tayler with NNUH Consultant Gynaecological Oncologist Tim Duncan. Photo: NNUH

Caroline Tayler with NNUH Consultant Gynaecological Oncologist Tim Duncan. Photo: NNUH - Credit: NNUH

The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) is raising the profile of the symptoms of ovarian cancer during March as part of an awareness month.

NNUH consultant gynaecological oncologist, Tim Duncan, said: 'Whilst we continue to make significant progress in the treatment of women with ovarian cancer, through improved surgical techniques and new drug treatments, there remains a substantial challenge posed by the delays in diagnosis.

'The ability to identify disease earlier would allow more effective treatment to be provided. Increased awareness of the symptoms and signs of ovarian cancer represents a real opportunity to identify the condition earlier and allow more successful outcomes.

'It's important to emphasise that the vast majority of women with symptoms will not have ovarian cancer, but seeing their GP to have some simple tests performed to exclude problems is vital.'

The most common symptoms include abdominal discomfort, bloating, reduced appetite, and symptoms similar to irritable bowel syndrome. Therefore, women often ignore the early signs for many months or even years before presenting to a health professional, by which stage curative treatment is not possible.

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More information about the symptoms of ovarian cancer is available at

The NNUH charity's VOiCE campaign supports local women going through or having experienced any gynaecological cancers, including vulval, ovarian, cervical and endometrial cancers.

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A number of fundraising events are taking place this month and next to support VOiCE.

This month, the Co-op in Brundall is holding a fundraising day when staff have been invited to wear brightly-coloured clothes and decorating the store in memory of a colleague who died in January shortly after being diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

In April, NNUH nurse Caroline Tayler, a runner for more than 36 years, will be taking on the London Marathon to raise funds for VOiCE.

She said: 'I work within our very caring gynae outpatient's department and have witnessed first hand the crushing blow when such awful news is given to some of our ladies.'

Anyone who would like to donate to Caroline's fundraising appeal can do so at /

If you would like to take part in a fundraising event for N&N Hospitals Charity, contact or 01603 287107.

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