Objective: To identify characteristics associated with long-term survival for patients with epithelial ovarian cancer using the California Cancer Registry.
Methods: A descriptive analysis of survival of all California residents diagnosed with epithelial ovarian cancer between 1994 and 2001 was conducted using patients identified through the cancer registry with follow-up through 2011. Characteristics of the patients who survived more than 10 years (long-term survivors) were compared with three other cohorts: patients who survived less than 2 years, those who survived at least 2 but no more than 5 years, and those who survived at least 5 but no more than 10 years.
Results: A total of 3,582 out of 11,541 (31%, confidence interval 30.2-31.8%) of the patients survived more than 10 years. Younger age, early stage, low-grade, and nonserous histology were significant predictors of long-term survival, but long-term survivors also included women with high-risk cancer.
Conclusion: Long-term survival is not unusual in patients with epithelial ovarian cancer, even in those with high-risk disease. Many of the prognostic factors are well known, but it remains to be determined why some patients with advanced-stage high-grade cancers survive longer than others with the same histology. These findings are important for patient counseling.
Level of evidence: III.