At this time, there are no specific guidelines for the prevention of ovarian cancer because the cause is unknown; however, women who have had children and who have breastfed them are at lower risk for developing ovarian cancer.

Genetic testing may help identify patients who should consider having a salpingo-oophorectomy . This procedure involves removing both ovaries and the fallopian tubes. It may be done, in some cases, to prevent ovarian cancer in high-risk women, such as:

    
  • Women with a first degree relative with ovarian or breast cancer
  • Women who have had breast cancer before age 40
  • Women who test positive for a genetic mutation (BRCA1 or BRCA2)
  • The surgery is the only proven method to reduce the risk of getting this often fatal disease.

    To reduce your risk:

        
  • Have an annual health checkup with a pelvic exam
  • Eat a low-fat diet that includes lots of fruits and vegetables.
  • Maintain a healthy weight so the doctor can easily feel your ovaries