More blood tests should be used by GPs in order to catch ovarian cancer at an earlier stage, it has been claimed.
The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has drawn up new guidelines that recommend doctors use a blood test that can detect a certain protein associated with the disease to aid in diagnosis.
It claims the cost of this will be offset in the long run as fewer women will need expensive operations further down the line.
While the test only works around half the time, experts believe using it more often and in conjunction with ultrasound scans where necessary will improve the UK’s survival rate for ovarian cancer, the BBC reports.
A member of the guideline group, Sean Duffy, from the Yorkshire Cancer Network, told the news provider: “The vast majority of ovarian cancer cases are diagnosed at a late stage, so we hope to see improvements in survival as a result of these guidelines.”
Around 7,000 women in the UK are diagnosed with ovarian cancer each year.