In the 7MM (US, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the UK, and Japan), of the most diagnosed incident cases of ovarian cancer are initially diagnosed in stage III. A diagnosis of ovarian cancer at stage III is considered to be an advanced diagnosis with a low five-year survival rate. Symptoms of ovarian cancer include bloating, pelvic or abdominal pain, and urinary symptoms such as urgency or frequency. The symptoms are not as noticeable in the early stages of ovarian cancer, compared to later stages.
Because early symptoms can be vague and nonspecific, ovarian cancer is often diagnosed at a later stage. GlobalData epidemiologists estimate that 40% of diagnosed incident cases of ovarian cancer were in stage III at initial diagnosis in the 7MM in 2018.
In 2018, diagnosed incident cases of ovarian cancer in stage III accounted for the highest proportion of cases in each market, followed by cases initially diagnosed in stage IV. Diagnosed incident cases of ovarian cancer diagnosed in stage II account for the lowest proportion in each market and the 7MM combined.
Diagnosing ovarian cancer at an earlier stage has been a research priority because cases diagnosed at an earlier stage have a higher rate of survival. Current research efforts include developing a screening test for ovarian cancer that examines protein patterns in blood. In addition to screening tests in development, researchers are studying genetic mutations and how detecting high-risk genes may help with prevention.