Background: Borderline tumors of the ovary (BOT) are a distinct entity of ovarian tumors, characterized by lack of stromal invasion. Recent studies postulated that the presence of invasive implants, incomplete staging, fertility sparing surgery and residual tumor after surgery are major prognostic factors for BOT. There are no biomarkers that can predict BOT or the presence of invasive implants.
Objective: The aim of our study was to assess the value of CA125 and HE4 alone, or within ROMA score for detecting BOT, and for predicting the presence of invasive implants.
Methods: Retrospective, monocentric study on 167 women diagnosed with BOT or benign ovarian masses. Serum HE4, CA125 levels and ROMA were assessed preoperatively. Due to low number of BOT with invasive implants, we performed an unmatched analysis (consecutive patients) and a matched analysis (according to age and histology) to compare BOT with invasive implants, BOT without invasive implants and benign disease.
Results: There were no significant differences in the HE4 and CA125 expressions in the three groups of patients (p = 0.984 and p = 0.141, respectively). The ROC analysis showed that CA125 alone is superior to ROMA and HE4 in discriminating patients with BOT with invasive implants from patients with benign diseases and BOT without invasive implants. A newly established score, ROMABOT, did not perform better than ROMA. The analysis of the matched groups revealed similar results as the analysis of all samples.
Conclusions: Both HE4 and CA125 are not reliable biomarkers for the diagnosis of BOT or for predicting the presence of invasive implants.
Keywords: Borderline ovarian tumors; CA125; HE4; Invasive implants; ROMA.