Management of Early Ovarian Cancer
March 01, 2004
Epithelial ovarian cancer is the leading cause of death from gynecologicmalignancies in the United States due, in large part, to the advancedstage at which it is commonly diagnosed. However, approximatelyone-third of cases are discovered at an early stage, when tumoris limited to the pelvis. Certain prognostic factors have been identified,which place patients with early disease at risk for recurrence and warrantthe use of adjuvant therapy. Systemic chemotherapy remains themost commonly used adjuvant therapy in this setting, and several randomizedEuropean trials have recently suggested a benefit to its use.These studies, however, suffered from the lack of comprehensive staging,which must be considered when interpreting the literature on earlystagedisease. Ideally, these patients should have access to a gynecologiconcologist prior to their initial surgical procedure.