A questionnaire-based survey on the diagnostic and therapeutic approaches for patients with STIC in Germany

Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2023 Jan 27. doi: 10.1007/s00404-023-06919-8. Online ahead of print.


Purpose: Despite the growing understanding of the carcinogenesis of pelvic high-grade serous carcinoma (HGSC) of the ovary and peritoneum and its precursor lesion serous tubal intraepithelial carcinoma (STIC), evidence-based proven recommendations on the clinical management of patients with STIC are lacking so far.

Methods: A questionnaire containing 21 questions was developed to explore the clinical experience with patients with the diagnosis of STICs and the diagnostic, surgical and histopathological approaches in Germany. Overall, 540 clinical heads of department in all German gynaecological centres were asked to participate.

Results: 131 questionnaires (response rate 24.3%) were included in this survey. 45.8% of the respondents had treated one to three STIC patients during their career. 75.6% of the respondents performed opportunistic bilateral salpingectomies during other gynaecological surgeries. Most of the participants (31.3%) started with the SEE-FIM (Sectioning and Extensively Examining the FIMbria) protocol in 2014. It was requested by 39.7% centres for prophylactic salpingectomies, by 13.7% for both prophylactic and opportunistic salpingectomies and by 22.1% for neither of both. 38.2%, 1.5% and 24.4% of the participants would use the laparoscopic, transverse and midline laparotomic approach for a surgical staging procedure, respectively. 25.6% (54.7%) of the respondents recommended a hysterectomy in premenopausal (versus postmenopausal) patients with a STIC, 24.4% (88.4%) a bilateral oophorectomy and 50.0% (4.7%) an affected side oophorectomy (all p values < 0.001). Omentectomy, pelvic and para-aortic lymphadenectomy would be performed by 60.5% (64.0%), 9.3% (11.6%) and 9.3% (11.6%) of respondents in premenopausal (versus postmenopausal) patients (all p values > 0.05).

Conclusion: Our survey highlights significant inconsistency in the management of patients with STIC. Prospective data are urgently needed to elucidate the clinical impact of a STIC lesion and its clinical management.

Keywords: BRCA; Ovarian cancer; SEE-FIM; STIC; Salpingectomy; Serous tubal intraepithelial carcinoma; Survey.