The accuracy of staging: An important prognostic determinator in stage I ovarian carcinoma. A multivariate analysis

G. Zanetta, S. Rota, S. Chiari, C. Bonazzi, G. Bratina, V. Torri, C. Mangioni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Several prognostic factors for stage I ovarian carcinoma have been analyzed. Some of them are biological and clinical in nature, but others such as the thoroughness of the staging procedure, the extent of the surgery and the philosophy of treatment, are defined by the human element. Patients and methods: We reviewed the records of 351 patients with Stage I ovarian cancer who had been treated from 1981 to 1991. For all patients the following information was available: age, size of the tumor, FIGO sub-stage, tumor grade, histologic type, rupture of the tumor, cytology, extent of the staging and of the surgery (hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy vs. fertility-conserving surgery) and use of adjuvant treatments. The thoroughness of the staging was defined as: optimal staging: total abdominal hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy or fertility-conserving surgery, peritoneal cytology or washing, omentectomy, multiple peritoneal biopsies, sampling of the retroperitoneal nodes or formal lymphadenectomy, peritoneal staging: all the criteria described above were met with the exception of retroperitoneal sampling, incomplete staging: lack of any of the previously-cited criteria. Results: An optimal staging was performed in 100 patients, a peritoneal staging in 107 and an incomplete staging in 144. Radical surgery was performed in 295 women and fertility-conserving surgery in 56. With a median follow-up of 108 months (range 14 184) 64 patients had recurrence of the tumor. Fifty-three died of the disease, two are currently alive with disease and nine were salvaged by surgery and/or chemotherapy. In a multivariate analysis only the tumor grade and the type of staging were significant independent prognostic factors for both disease-free and overall survival. Conclusions: As described by other authors, we confirm that tumor grade is the single most important biological prognostic factor in early ovarian carcinoma. The thoroughness of the staging impacts significantly on survival, particularly in poorly differentiated carcinomas. Fertility- sparing surgery is not associated with a worse outcome than standard radical surgery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1097-1101
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of Oncology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1998


  • Conservative surgery
  • Lymph node
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Prognosis
  • Staging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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