What is the prognosis of ovarian cancer?

Updated: Aug 10, 2020
  • Author: Andrew E Green, MD; Chief Editor: Yukio Sonoda, MD  more...
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Answer

Although the 5-year survival rate for ovarian cancer has improved significantly in the past 30 years, the prognosis for ovarian cancer remains poor overall, with a 48.6% 5-year relative survival rate. [27] The prognosis of ovarian cancer is closely related to the stage at diagnosis, [31, 32] as determined according to the staging system developed by the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO). (See Workup/Staging.) Approximately 20%, 5%, 58%, and 17% of women present with stage I, II, III, and IV, respectively.

The 5-year survival rates (rounded to the nearest whole number) for epithelial ovarian carcinoma by FIGO stage are as follows:

  • Stage IA - 87%
  • Stage IB - 71%
  • Stage IC - 79%
  • Stage IIA - 67%
  • Stage IIB - 55%
  • Stage IIC - 57%
  • Stage IIIA - 41%
  • Stage IIIB - 25%
  • Stage IIIC - 23%
  • Stage IV - 11%
  • Overall survival rate – 46%

Bakhru et al found poorer survival among patients with ovarian cancer and diabetes. Although the underlying reason for this association is unknown, further studies are needed. [33]

Among women with high-grade serous ovarian cancer, BRCA2 mutation but not BRCA1 deficiency was associated with improved survival, improved chemotherapy response, and genome instability compared with BRCA wild-type. [34]

A study by Bolton et al found improved 5-year overall survival among carriers of BRCA1 or BRCA2, with BRCA1 having the best prognosis. [35]

A retrospective study found an association between statin use and reduced ovarian cancer–specific mortality. In this observational study, which included 10,062 women aged 18 and older diagnosed with incident ovarian cancer between 1995 and 2015, mortality was reduced by 40% in women who were taking any type of statin, and by 43% in those taking lipophilic statins, in comparison with mortality in women who had never used statins. The beneficial effect of statin use was observed across all stages, treatments, and subtypes of epithelial ovarian cancer. [36]


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