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Br J Obstet Gynaecol. 1997 Sep;104(9):1030-5.

Conservative surgery for stage I ovarian carcinoma in women of childbearing age.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, San Gerardo Hospital, University of Milan, Italy.



To assess the results of a policy of tailored conservative surgical management for young women with stage I ovarian carcinomas.


Retrospective study.


Ninety-nine women aged 40 years or younger who underwent either primary surgery in our department or were referred after primary surgery performed elsewhere.


Of the 99 women in our study, 56 underwent fertility-sparing surgery and 43 more radical surgery. Minimal requirements for conservative management were adequate staging and complete information about the therapeutic options. Factors important in the choice of the treatment were, age, wish to preserve fertility, histologic type and grade, and the stage of the tumour.


Conservative treatment was conducted in 84% of nulliparous and in 33% of parous women; 62% of grade 1 tumours, 48% of grade 2, and 50% of grade 3 were treated conservatively. With a median follow up of seven years, we observed five recurrences (9%) of carcinoma in women treated conservatively and five (12%) in those treated more radically. Two women (one in each treatment arm) were saved after recurrence. Two recurrences after conservative surgery involved the residual ovary (3.6%). Two women developed borderline tumour in the contralateral ovary and both were treated by surgery.


After adequate staging and accurate information is given to the patient, conservative treatment may be safe in some women with early ovarian cancer. The risk of recurrence in the contralateral ovary is low. Conservative surgery may be also considered in some Stage I grade 3 tumours and in some women with stage JC tumours.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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