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Breast J. 2004 Jan-Feb;10 Suppl 1:S5-9.

Efficacy of risk-reducing salpingo-oophorectomy in women with BRCA-1 and BRCA-2 mutations.

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Center for Clinical Cancer Genetics, Department of Medicine, University of Chicago Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois 60637, USA.


Recognizing the emerging role of genetics in clinical care, in 1996 the American Society of Clinical Oncology established a Task Force on Cancer Genetics Education to develop educational opportunities and resources for its members. These efforts, and recent advances in the understanding of genetic predisposition to breast and ovarian cancers, have resulted in growing numbers of women participating in genetic testing protocols. The first prospective clinical trial involving women with known BRCA-1 and BRCA-2 mutations was recently published. In a prospective study involving 170 BRCA-1 and BRCA-2 mutation carriers and a mean follow-up of 2 years, the estimated 5-year cancer-free estimates were 96% for the 98 women choosing prophylactic bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy and 69% for the 72 women choosing intensive surveillance (p=0.006). Three cases of stage I ovarian cancers were diagnosed at the time of prophylactic surgery. These results are consistent with published literature and data from the Prevention and Observation of Surgical Endpoints (PROSE) study group, which reported a 96% reduction in ovarian cancer risk and a 53% reduction in breast cancer risk among BRCA-1 and BRCA-2 mutation carriers who had prophylactic bilateral oophorectomy compared to matched controls. Thus prophylactic bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy can be regarded as an effective risk-reducing procedure that permits early diagnosis of ovarian cancer at the time of surgery and significantly reduces the risk of breast and ovarian cancer in women with germ-line mutations in the BRCA-1 and BRCA-2 genes.

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