Although gynecologic cancers account for only 10% of all new cancer cases in women, these cancers account for 20% of all female cancer survivors. Improvements in cancer care have resulted in almost 10 million cancer survivors, and this number is expected to grow. Therefore, determining the most cost-effective clinical surveillance for detection of recurrence is critical. Unfortunately, there has been a paucity of research in what are the most cost-effective strategies for surveillance once patients have achieved a complete response. Currently, most recommendations are based on retrospective studies and expert opinion. Taking a thorough history, performing a thorough examination, and educating cancer survivors about concerning symptoms is the most effective method for the detection of most gynecologic cancer recurrences. There is very little evidence that routine cytologic procedures or imaging improves the ability to detect gynecologic cancer recurrence at a stage that will impact cure or response rates to salvage therapy. This article will review the most recent data on surveillance for gynecologic cancer recurrence in women who have had a complete response to primary cancer therapy.
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