September 1st 2005
The management of ovarian cancer entails a complex blend of medicaland surgical interventions. Managing patients with recurrent ovariancancer increases the complexity of therapies and adds palliative interventions.The presence of recurrent ovarian cancer is both emotionally andphysically taxing for patients as well as their caregivers. With an increasinglyinformed patient population, a balance must be achieved betweeneasily accessible information enabling patients to know that they nowhave an incurable disease and support for their hopes and desires to stillovercome their cancer. The decision tree in the management of recurrentovarian cancer blends many different factors. This discussion will separatethose factors as if they are pure elements. We will address managementbased on response to primary therapy and time to recurrence, thelocation of recurrence, symptoms of recurrence, the patient’s histopathology,and the patient’s primary stage as it relates to the extent of diseasepresent at the start of chemotherapy.