While a Pap smear is important to detect and prevent cervical cancer, there are other medical conditions that it cannot detect. Gonorrhea, chlamydia, genital herpes, and syphilis are common STDs that a Pap smear cannot screen for. And since they don't show any symptoms, most people often fail to diagnose them. Other serious conditions that a Pap smear can't detect are PCOS and ovarian cancer.
Though not very common, ovarian cancer is still the fifth leading cause of deaths due to cancer. For the longest time, it was considered a “silent killer” because most people believed that symptoms wouldn't show up until it was too late. However, several scientific studies have debunked this myth. It's not that the symptoms don't show up early enough, it's just that they are often mistaken for other common diseases. Here are some early signs and risk factors of ovarian cancer you should watch out for.
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