Epidemiology of Second Primary Tumors in Women With Ovarian Cancer

Int J Gynecol Cancer. 2017 May;27(4):659-667. doi: 10.1097/IGC.0000000000000950.


Objective: The last large study of second primary tumors (SPTs) in women with ovarian cancer was published in 1996, prior to major changes in the differential diagnosis and treatment. The present study reports on the incidence of SPTs in a contemporary cohort of patients with a diagnosis of ovarian cancer.

Methods: Ovarian cancer patients with a diagnosis of an ovarian malignancy between 1992 and 2012 were identified and characterized from 13 registries of the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database.

Results: Of 41,073 women with a diagnosis of an ovarian malignancy between 1992 and 2012, 1831 (4.5%) developed a microscopically confirmed SPT. There was no significant difference in the risk of developing an SPT at all sites between women with an ovarian cancer and the general population. There was an elevated risk of site-specific SPTs of the small intestine, vagina, thyroid gland, and acute nonlymphocytic leukemia in ovarian cancer patients compared with the general Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results population. Conversely, the risk of lung and non-Hodgkin lymphoma was significantly decreased in women with ovarian cancer. An elevated risk of SPTs was observed in women with mucinous, endometrioid, and germ cell tumors. White women had an overall decreased risk of developing a second primary solid tumor, whereas American Indian and Asian/Pacific Islander women had an overall increased risk of an SPT at any site.

Conclusions: The incidence of SPTs in women with ovarian cancer was not significantly different as compared with the general population. However, divergent rates of SPTs in relation to histology, latency, age, and race were observed.

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms, Second Primary / epidemiology*
  • Neoplasms, Second Primary / pathology
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology
  • SEER Program
  • United States / epidemiology