The exact cause of development of ovarian cancer remains unknown. It appears that ovarian cancer is the cumulative effect of multiple genetic mutations that occurs during the lifetime of a woman. The exact mechanisms by which these genetic mutations lead to the development of ovarian cancer is unknown. It has been suggested that the repeated disruption and repair of the outer surface of the ovaries as it happens with ovulation during the monthly menstrual cycle may
predispose to genetic mutations. This may partly explain why ovarian cancer incidence increases with lower number of pregnancies and childbirth, since these would decrease the number of ovulations and disruption repair cycle of the outer covering of the ovaries. There are factors that may increase the risk of ovarian cancer, and these are known as risk factors for ovarian cancer. These risk factors will be described briefly in the following section.