Tamoxifen use in recurrent ovarian cancer in a Chinese population: A 15 -year clinical experience in a tertiary referral center

Asia Pac J Clin Oncol. 2021 Aug;17(4):338-342. doi: 10.1111/ajco.13478. Epub 2020 Oct 20.


Aim: To review the clinical use and the effectiveness of tamoxifen in patients with advanced or recurrent ovarian cancer.

Methods: A retrospective review of clinical records was conducted in patients who received tamoxifen for the treatment of ovarian cancer between 2002 and 2016. We reviewed the clinical setting that it was given, duration of use, patients' tolerability, clinical benefit and progression-free survival. We also attempted to identify predictive markers for response.

Results: A total of 92 patients received tamoxifen during this 15-year period. The patients received a median of 2.5 lines of chemotherapy before switching to tamoxifen, and they remained on tamoxifen for a median of 5.6 months (range 0-85 months), with 24 patients receiving it for more than 12 months. Seventy-six patients continued on tamoxifen for more than 2 months. In this group, 75 patients had an evaluable response, either by CA 125 or clinically and clinical benefit rate (defined as complete, partial response and static disease) was seen in 42 patients (56%), with majority of patients having static disease. The median progression-free survival was 5.3 months (95% confidence interval, 2.6-8.1). Tamoxifen was well tolerated. Hormone receptor status was not demonstrated to predict response.

Conclusion: Patients with advanced ovarian cancer who have failed previous lines of chemotherapy may achieve static disease with tamoxifen with minimal side effects. Tamoxifen may still have a role in the era of molecular target therapy.

Keywords: SERMS; ovarian cancer; tamoxifen.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antineoplastic Agents, Hormonal / therapeutic use
  • Breast Neoplasms
  • China
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / drug therapy
  • Ovarian Neoplasms* / drug therapy
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Tamoxifen / therapeutic use*
  • Tertiary Care Centers
  • Young Adult


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Hormonal
  • Tamoxifen