Surgery is the cornerstone of management of epithelial ovarian cancer and has broad applications throughout the clinical course of disease, from initial diagnosis to palliative care. Comprehensive surgical staging is essential for precise prognostic determination and treatment planning for patients with apparent early-stage ovarian cancer. Although randomized trials are lacking, the survival advantage associated with optimal primary cytoreduction has been consistent and reproducible. With increasing radicality of cytoreductive surgical techniques and sophistication of postoperative care, it appears that an "optimal" surgical procedure is that which leaves the patient with no visible residual disease. The survival benefits of cytoreductive surgery are also applicable to women with stage IV ovarian cancer, although the rate of success is somewhat attenuated compared with patients with stage III disease. Recent data also indicate that with appropriate surgical selection criteria, secondary cytoreduction is associated with a significant prolongation of survival for patients with recurrent ovarian cancer. Unfortunately, several recent publications illustrate how the decentralization of health care may have significant ramifications on the ability of women with known or suspected ovarian cancer to avail themselves of the surgical standard of care.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research