Characteristics of Long-Term Survivors of Epithelial Ovarian Cancer

Obstet Gynecol. 2015 Sep;126(3):491-497. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000000981.


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.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • California
  • Carcinoma, Ovarian Epithelial
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness / pathology
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Neoplasms, Glandular and Epithelial / mortality*
  • Neoplasms, Glandular and Epithelial / pathology*
  • Neoplasms, Glandular and Epithelial / therapy
  • Odds Ratio
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / mortality*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / therapy
  • Ovariectomy / methods
  • Prognosis
  • Registries*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Survivors / statistics & numerical data*
  • Time Factors
  • Young Adult