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Ovarian Cancer Health Center

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Ovarian Epithelial Cancer Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Stage I and Stage II Ovarian Epithelial Cancer Treatment

Treatment options:

  1. If the tumor is well differentiated or moderately well differentiated, surgery alone may be adequate treatment for patients with stage IA and IB disease. Surgery should include hysterectomy, bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy, and omentectomy. Additionally, the undersurface of the diaphragm should be visualized and biopsied; pelvic and abdominal peritoneal biopsies and pelvic and para-aortic lymph node biopsies are required and peritoneal washings should be obtained routinely.[1] In selected patients who desire childbearing and have grade I tumors, unilateral salpingo-oophorectomy may be associated with a low risk of recurrence.[2]
  2. If the tumor is grade III, densely adherent, or stage IC, the chance of relapse and death from ovarian cancer is as much as 30%.[3,4,5,6] Clinical trials evaluating the following treatment approaches have been performed:

In two large European trials, European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer-Adjuvant ChemoTherapy in Ovarian Neoplasm (EORTC-ACTION) and International Collaborative Ovarian Neoplasm (MRC-ICON1 [NCT00002477]), patients with stage IA and stage IB (grades II and III), all stage IC and stage II, and all stage I and stage IIA clear cell carcinoma were randomly assigned to adjuvant chemotherapy or observation. Data were reported individually and in pooled form.[12,13,14]

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Questions to Ask Your Doctor About Ovarian Cancer

Has my ovarian cancer spread? Do I have to have both of my ovaries removed? If so, will I have hot flashes? How confident are you that all of the cancer has been removed? Which chemotherapy drugs do you recommend? Do I have any other treatment options? How long will I have to undergo chemotherapy? What side effects should I look for? Are there ways to minimize these side effects? Will I need any additional surgery? Should I be tested for the BRCA-1 BRCA-2 mutations? What...

Read the Questions to Ask Your Doctor About Ovarian Cancer article > >

The EORTC-ACTION trial required at least four cycles of carboplatin or cisplatin-based chemotherapy as treatment. Although surgical staging criteria were monitored, inadequate staging was not an exclusion criterion. Recurrence-free survival (RFS) was improved in the adjuvant chemotherapy arm (hazard ratio [HR], 0.63; P = .02), but overall survival (OS) was not affected (HR, 0.69; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.44-1.08; P = .10). OS was improved by chemotherapy in the subset of patients with inadequate surgical staging.

The MRC-ICON1 trial randomly assigned patients to six cycles of single-agent carboplatin or cisplatin or platinum-based chemotherapy (usually cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, and cisplatin) versus observation and had similar entry criteria to the EORTC-ACTION trial; however, the MRC-ICON1 trial did not monitor whether adequate surgical staging was performed. Both RFS and OS were significantly improved; 5-year survival figures were 79% with adjuvant chemotherapy versus 70% without adjuvant chemotherapy.

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