Clinicopathological characteristics of mucinous adenocarcinoma of the ovary

Gynecol Oncol. 2009 Jun;113(3):331-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2009.02.010. Epub 2009 Mar 10.


Objective: We conducted the present study to clarify the clinicopathological characteristics of mucinous adenocarcinoma.

Methods: Two hundred twenty-five patients were diagnosed with mucinous adenocarcinoma at individual institutes and underwent primary treatment between 1998 and 2003. Of these patients, 189 patients who could undergo central pathological review were enrolled in this study. Of 189 patients undergoing central pathological review, 64 patients (33.9%) were diagnosed with mucinous invasive adenocarcinoma, 45 mucinous intraepithelial carcinoma, and 42 mucinous tumor of borderline malignancy. Twenty-five patients were diagnosed with other histological subtypes, including 8 endometrioid adenocarcinoma, 5 clear cell carcinoma, 3 serous adenocarcinoma, and 4 mixed type. There were 13 cases of metastatic mucinous adenocarcinoma, including 7 pseudomyxoma peritonei. Four hundred thirty-three patients with serous adenocarcinoma were used as controls.

Results: Forty-five patients with mucinous invasive carcinoma were in FIGO I-II stages and 19 in III-IV stages. There was no difference in the outcome between mucinous invasive adenocarcinoma and serous adenocarcinoma in I-II stage patients and III-IV stage patients with optimal operation. In contrast, patients with mucinous invasive adenocarcinoma receiving suboptimal operation showed a significantly worse prognosis (survival rate: 27.8% vs. 61.5%). The response rate to chemotherapy for mucinous invasive adenocarcinoma was significantly lower than for serous adenocarcinoma (12.5% vs. 67.7%).

Conclusions: The diagnosis of mucinous invasive adenocarcinoma was difficult. Since patients with mucinous invasive adenocarcinoma had a lower response to chemotherapy, aggressive cytoreductive surgery was an effective treatment to improve the prognosis for advanced stage patients. A new chemotherapeutic regimen should be established for mucinous adenocarcinoma of the ovary.

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma, Mucinous / diagnosis
  • Adenocarcinoma, Mucinous / pathology*
  • Adenocarcinoma, Mucinous / therapy
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / therapy
  • Prognosis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Survival Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome