Imaging ovarian cancer - from baseline characteristics to high-risk image factors

J Ovarian Res. 2023 Apr 17;16(1):78. doi: 10.1186/s13048-023-01154-w.


Background: Imaging ovarian cancer (OC) includes evaluating peritoneal carcinomatosis (PC) and enlarged cardio phrenic lymph nodes (CPLN) by computed tomography (CT), and thorough evaluation is tedious work. A "CT short score" with high-risk CT parameters might be a more pragmatic approach, but it is not known if such a short score associates with aggressive OC subtypes and impaired OC survival. Further, it is not known if certain established OC risk factors are linked to high-risk CT-findings which would be important in image evaluation. Herein, we investigate a CT short score and its relation to baseline characteristics, OC subtypes, and survival.

Methods: The Malmö Diet and Cancer Study is a prospective cohort that included 17,035 women (1991-1996). Baseline characteristics and tumor information on 159 OC and information on OC specific survival (last follow-up, 2017-12-31) was registered. A CT short score (CPLN and PC-index (PCI) in seven regions) was registered and associations with clinical stage [stage I vs. advanced stage (II-IV), histological type/grade (high grade serous and endometrioid vs. other subtypes], and OC-specific survival were analyzed with logistic and Cox regression, respectively. Parity and menopausal status were analyzed in relation to short score and PCI.

Results: There was an association between higher short score and advanced clinical stage (adjusted OR 2.76 (1.42-5.38)), adjusted for age at diagnosis and histological type/grade. Higher short score was associated with impaired OC specific survival (adjusted HR 1.17 (1.01-1.35)), adjusted for age at diagnosis, histological type/grade, and clinical stage. There were no significant associations between parity, menopausal status, and short score/PCI.

Conclusions: CT short score was significantly associated with advanced clinical stages and impaired OC survival. A pragmatic approach (based on CT) to evaluate high risk image findings in OC could help reduce radiologists' workload and at the same time provide structured reports to surgeons and oncologists involved in OC care.

Keywords: Lymph nodes; Ovarian cancer; Ovarian cancer survival; Peritoneal Carcinomatosis.

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Humans
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Ovarian Neoplasms* / diagnostic imaging
  • Prognosis
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors