Ovarian Cancer Canada

Western Regional Blog – BC, YK, AB, NWT and Nunavut

The relation between endometriosis and ovarian cancer – a review

“Expression of estrogen and progesterone receptors was associated with improved survival in women with endometrioid and high-grade serous ovarian cancers, according to study results”

BACKGROUND: Endometriosis is known to harbor characteristics substantiating that it is a possible precursor of ovarian cancer.
OBJECTIVE: This review was made to 1) assess the quality of the literature regarding the association between endometriosis and ovarian cancer and 2) to estimate the extent of the relation.
DATA: Electronic literature search was conducted in PubMed and 1112 articles dealing with the relation between endometriosis and ovarian cancer were identified.
METHODS AND STUDY SELECTION: Original articles based on case-control studies, cohort studies and cross-sectional studies were included. Studies consisting of populations with self-reported endometriosis were excluded, as were articles with less than 20 cases of ovarian cancer. Twenty-eight studies underwent detailed quality assessments based on the checklists developed by the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN). Meta-analyses were conducted on selected subgroups of ovarian cancer with coexisting endometriosis.
RESULTS: None of the 28 studies were given highest possible rating using the SIGN checklists. The risk of ovarian cancer in patients with endometriosis was reported to be standardized incidence ratio 1.43-8.95, rate ratio 1.6-2.88, odds ratio 1.34 and with a prevalence of ovarian cancer in 2.0-17.0% of patients with endometriosis. Conversely, the prevalence of endometriosis in patients with ovarian cancer ranged from 3.4-52.6%. Meta-analysis results were weakened by heterogeneity.
CONCLUSION: There is sufficient evidence to conclude that there is an increased risk of developing clear-cell and endometrioid epithelial ovarian cancer for patients with histologically verified endometriosis. Nonetheless prospective cohort studies assessing the relation between endometriosis and ovarian cancer will strengthen knowledge in this field. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

Heidemann LN, Hartwell D, Heidemann CH, Jochumsen KM.

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