Epithelial ovarian cancer is generally detected late, with overall five year survival of 20-30%. The search for a cheap, accurate screening test to identify the disease in its early stage has been ongoing for the past few decades. Currently, there is no proven strategy for the early detection of cancer that decreases ovarian cancer mortality.
In the most recent joint Committee Opinion, ACOG and SGO makes the following statement regarding direct-to-consumer marketing of ovarian cancer screening tests
At this time, there is insufficient evidence to support the use of any of these tests or algorithms for the early detection of ovarian cancer in average-risk women. Women considering purchasing these tests, which are currently not approved nor cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for ovarian cancer screening and are not financially covered by medical insurance, should be counseled on the risks of such tests.
Although ovarian cancer has been described as “silent”, it is not uncommon for women with the disease to have abdominal symptoms. Persistent and progressive bloating, abdominal/pelvic pain, early satiety, appetite loss, urinary urgency, increased abdominal girth should be evaluated with a high index of suspicion for malignancy.
When a pelvic mass has been identified on examination and imaging, consider referral to or consultation with a gynecologic oncologist when
ACOG and SGO Committee Opinion No. 716: The Role of the Obstetrician-Gynecologist in the Early Detection of Epithelial Ovarian Cancer in Women at Average Risk
ACOG Practice Bulletin No. 174: Evaluation and management of adnexal masses
SGO: Ovarian Cancer Screening and Symptom Awareness Consensus Statement
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