Prognosis of Ovarian Cancer

By  , Expert Content
Oct 04, 2012

A woman with ovarian cancer will naturally be concerned about what is going to happen to her, what will be the prognosis, how long will she live, what is the best mode of treatment.Prognosis tells the patients their chance of recovery or have a recurrence (return of the cancer) of the disease. Understanding the prognosis, the possible outcome and what the future holds helps the patient and the family to handle the disease and living with it better. This also gives the patients and their loved ones to decide on most appropriate treatment, the lifestyle changes, and finances.[Read:How Do You Get Ovarian Cancer?]

Prognosis of ovarian cancer is depends on many factors, and some of the important ones are:

  • type of the cancer
  • site or location of the cancer
  • stage of cancer (that is the size of the tumour, extent of involvement of the organ, spread to other parts of the body).[Read: Stages of Ovarian Cancer]
  • grade of tumour (how abnormal or malignant the cancer cells are and how quickly the cells grow and spread).
  • patient factors such as age, general health, and response to treatment.

When considering the prognosis the 5 year survival rate is also assessed. Survivalrates of a cancer indicate the proportion of people with a certain type and stage of cancer who live for a specific period of time after their diagnosis. The five-year survival rate indicates the percentage of people with the disease who are still alive five years after diagnosis (factors such as signs or symptoms of cancer, presence or absence of disease, or treatment are not considered).

A major factor which decides the prognosis and 5 year survival is the stage of cancer. Based on studies the 5 year survival rate of different stages of ovarian cancer is as follows:

  • Localised cancer: 19 per cent of ovarian cancer cases are diagnosed when the cancer is still localised i.e. confined to the primary site or site or origin and the 5 year survival rate is 93.1 per cent
  • Regional spread: 7 per cent of ovarian cancers have spread to regional lymph nodes or directly beyond the primary site at the time of diagnosis and the 5 year survival rate is 69 per cent.
  • Distant metastasis: 68 per cent of ovarian cancer cases are diagnosed after metastasis to distant site and the 5 year survival rate is 29.6 per cent
  • Unstaged cancer: for 7 per cent of ovarian cancer cases the stage is not known and the 5 year survival rate is 23.3 per cent

The doctor after examination and tests can discuss the prognosis with you. But you have to realise that prognosis is only the possible course and the doctor cannot be absolutely sure about the outcome.


Read more articles on Ovarian Cancer.


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