The Evaluation of Risk Factors Associated With Relapse and Recurrence of Borderline Ovarian Tumors With Long-Term Follow-up

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The goal was to analyze the risk factors of relapse and to compare the type of recurrence in patients with borderline tumors treated and followed up in Oncologic Center in Warsaw.

Materials and Methods

This is a retrospective–prospective cohort study of 307 patients with confirmed borderline ovarian tumors treated in the Maria Sklodowska-Curie Memorial Cancer Center in Warsaw between 1994 and 2010. Univariate and multivariate analysis as well as Kaplan–Meier estimates were used to explore the impact of different covariates on progression-free survival. The analysis included the following potential prognostic factors: age, CA 125 value, stage according to classification of the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO), methods and radicality of operation, staging, tumor capsule rupture, histopathology, implants, ascites, and microinvasion. The analysis of relapses was also performed.


Univariate analysis showed the negative impact of 2 factors on progression-free survival: FIGO II/III (implants) (P = 0.011) and ascites (P = 0.027). The multivariate analyses showed the detrimental effect of FIGO Ic (HR, 2.63; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.12–6.17, P = 0.027), FIGO II or III (implants) (HR, 3.67; 95% CI, 1.56–8.61, P = 0.003), and incomplete staging (HR, 3.63; 95% CI, 1.09–12.07, P = 0.035), but not ascites (P > 0.1). Relapse occurred in 32 (10%) patients: in 22 patients as borderline and in 10 patients as invasive tumor. Seven (70%) patients with invasive relapse died of disease. All patients with borderline relapses were successfully managed by second surgery, which in 80% was again conservative.


Relapses in borderline ovarian tumor are uncommon, in 10% of patients. Invasive relapses are rare, only in 3% of patients, but often with fatal course irrespective of the treatment applied. The most important clinical risk factors of relapse are implants (FIGO II/III), FIGO Ic, and incomplete staging and this patients as well as patients with ascites should be closely followed. Relapses of borderline histology are easily detected and successfully managed by surgery.

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