Can we safely forgo hysterectomy in non-fertility-sparing surgery for borderline ovarian tumors?

Gynecol Oncol Rep. 2021 Feb 12:36:100730. doi: 10.1016/j.gore.2021.100730. eCollection 2021 May.


Forgoing hysterectomy as part of borderline ovarian tumor (BOT) staging is considered appropriate for fertility preservation. We evaluated whether forgoing hysterectomy may also be acceptable in non-fertility-sparing surgery by evaluating the frequency of uterine involvement and the rate of recurrence involving the uterus. A review of all BOTs at one institution over ten years (2009-2019) was performed. Patients with hysterectomy prior to BOT diagnosis were excluded. Data were abstracted from electronic medical records. Bivariate statistics were used to compare groups. 129 patients with BOT on final pathology were identified. 67 cases included hysterectomy. Reasons for no hysterectomy (n = 62) included fertility preservation (40), benign intraoperative frozen pathology (4), patient preference (3), comorbidities (7), and unknown (8). Four of 67 (6.0%) uterine specimens had non-invasive serosal implants, of which two had grossly visible uterine involvement and all four had grossly visible extrauterine peritoneal disease. 12 of 129 (9.3%) patients had documented recurrence, of which all had uterine preservation at the time of initial surgery. Of the 12 recurrences with uterus in situ, none were documented to involve the uterus, and all were composed of non-invasive implants. In patients with BOT grossly confined to ovaries at the time of surgery, we found no cases of uterine involvement. We found no cases in which microscopic uterine serosal involvement changed stage and no cases of recurrence involving the uterus. Hysterectomy may be able to be safely excluded from non-fertility-sparing surgery for BOTs, particularly when disease is grossly confined to the ovaries.

Keywords: Borderline ovarian tumors; Hysterectomy; Ovarian tumors of low malignant potential.