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Obstet Gynecol. 1993 May;81(5 ( Pt 1)):651-4.

Profiles of women age 30-39 and age less than 30 with epithelial ovarian cancer.

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  • 1Department of Reproductive Medicine, University of California, San Diego.



To study a group of women diagnosed with epithelial ovarian cancer at a young age (less than 40).


Tumor registry data were analyzed with respect to age at diagnosis, stage, grade, frequency of nulligravidity, and family history of breast or ovarian cancer. Frequencies were analyzed using contingency tables, and survival distributions were analyzed according to the method of Kaplan and Meier. Multivariate survival analysis was performed with the Cox method.


We found significantly higher frequencies of low-grade tumors (90 versus 37%; P = .0003, chi 2 test) and early-stage tumors (45 versus 17%; P = .03, Fisher exact test) in women less than 30 at the time of diagnosis (very young patients) than in those between 30-39. We also found a significant (P = .017, Breslow statistic) survival advantage for the very young women. Multivariate analysis demonstrated tumor grade as the independent variable for survival.


These findings support the concept of a preclinical phase of epithelial carcinoma and show that young women may derive substantial benefit from ovarian cancer screening programs.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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