Ovarian Cancer

Treatment for stage 1 ovarian cancer

How is stage 1 ovarian cancer treated?

Surgery is the main modality of treatment for stage I ovarian cancer. Stage I ovarian cancers are usually incidentally detected. Staging laparotomy is the surgery of choice where the surgeon removes the tumor along with the uterus, ovaries, fallopian tubes, omentum along with multiple peritoneal biopsies. If there is any peritoneal fluid then that has to be sent for cytology. The treatment after surgery totally depends on the substrate and stage of the cancer.

Stages 1a and 1b

At this stage, treatment depends on the way the cancer cells look under a microscope and this process is called a biopsy to detect the tumor grade.

  • Grade 1 (low-grade tumors/ borderline)

If the patient was diagnosed with ovarian cancer of stage 1a and has not yet had children, fertility preserving hysterectomy is the option in which only one ovary and fallopian tube is removed and the healthy ovary is left behind. Most patients after the initial surgery at this stage don’t need any kind of treatment.

  • Grade 2 (high-grade tumors )

At this stage, patients are either watched closely with serial monitoring of CA 125 after the surgery or they are given 3 to 6 cycles of chemotherapy.

  • Grade 3 (high-grade tumors )

At this grade, the treatment usually given is chemotherapy. The dosage of chemo is the same as the one given for grade 2.

Stage 1c

The first treatment given is the standard surgery for the removal of the cancer and this is followed up by 3 to 6 cycles of chemotherapy.

However, before the treatment of chemotherapy is started the patient is first allowed time to heal from the surgery and the chemotherapy cycle is started.

See more on treatment for ovarian cancer here