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Crit Rev Oncol Hematol. 2007 May;62(2):137-47. Epub 2006 Dec 26.

Should intraperitoneal chemotherapy be considered as standard first-line treatment in advanced stage ovarian cancer?

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Gynecologic Oncology Service, Centre Hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal (CHUM)-Hôpital Notre-Dame, Montréal, Quebec, Canada.


Current standard therapy for patients with advanced stage epithelial ovarian cancer is cytoreductive surgery followed by combination chemotherapy with paclitaxel and carboplatin. Intraperitoneal (IP) chemotherapy has demonstrated improved outcome compared to standard intravenous treatment in three large randomized phase III trials and confirmed by Cochrane meta-analysis. Although compelling evidence suggests that IP therapy provides survival benefit in a selected group of ovarian cancer patients, it remains unclear which group of patients will really benefit from IP therapy, which is the optimal drug, dose and combination, and what is the real benefit of IP treatment alone. Other concerns about IP therapy are difficulties in completing the assigned treatment and management of its pattern of toxic side-effects. Today, IP chemotherapy has yet to gain a role as standard first-line treatment in advanced stage ovarian cancer. In the near future, efforts should aim at developing an effective IP regimen and research undertaken for a better understanding of the peritoneal environment.

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