The development of peritoneal cancer starts on the thin tissue layer which lines the abdomen and also covers the bladder, rectum and uterus. This structure is known as peritoneum and comprises of epithelial cells. Production of fluid by this layer makes it possible for the organs to move smoothly in the abdomen. More often than not, peritoneal cancer is confused with stomach or intestinal cancer by many, but the truth is that these cancers are different.

Peritoneal cancer is linked to ovarian cancer

Ideally speaking, peritoneal cancer has close resemblance to ovarian cancer and looks and acts in the same way as this cancer does. The main explanation to this is that the surface found on ovaries also comprises of epithelial cells and it is needless to say that the symptoms of these two cancers are more or less the same. In addition, the treatment of ovarian and peritoneal cancers is nearly the same. However, it is worth noting that one can still get peritoneal cancer even after having their ovaries removed. This cancer can occur at any place on the abdominal space.

Causes and risks of peritoneal cancer

What actually causes peritoneal cancer isn’t well known and many theories exist as far as how this cancer starts is concerned. There are those who believe that ovarian tissue implants during fetal development in the abdomen is responsible for causing this cancer. There are others who hold the view that changes that happens on peritoneum gives it a seemingly look of ovaries and thus vulnerable to cancerous cells. According to past statistics, women are at a much higher risk of getting peritoneal cancer than men. The risk among women even increases when they have either BRCA1 or BRCA2 genetic mutations. Another risk factor noted for peritoneal cancer is older age.

Peritoneal cancer: symptoms and treatments

Detection of peritoneal cancer can be quite hard just like ovarian cancer, especially when it is in the early stages. This is more so because the vague symptoms make it rather hard to pinpoint. Clear symptoms only occur after the disease has progressed and this makes treating it a challenge. Common symptoms, however, include abdominal pain or discomfort from indigestion, gas, bloating, cramps or pressure, diarrhea or nausea, fullness feeling even after taking a light meal, constipation, appetite loss, constipation, abnormal vaginal bleeding, breathe shortness and unexplained loss or gain of weight.

Treatment option recommended for peritoneal cancer depends on various factors like the grade and stage of the peritoneal cancer, location and size of cancer as well as your overall health and age. The main treatment alternatives available for peritoneal cancer include surgery, chemotherapy and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy. When peritoneal cancer is in advanced stages, the patients receive supportive care to help ease pain and deal with weight issues among other symptoms.

If you are a caregiver, get CPR and first aid certification online so that you can equip yourself with important life support skills for your patients. You never know when they will come in handily, especially if you are handling a patient with advanced peritoneal cancer.

Thank you for taking the time to read our content. Be sure to let us know if you’re interested in getting certified with an online CPR certification.