Women receiving fertility-sparing surgery for treatment of borderline ovarian tumors were able to have children, a study from Karolinska Institutet in Sweden published in Fertility & Sterility shows. Natural fertility was preserved in most of them and only a small proportion required assisted reproductive treatment such as in vitro fertilization. Survival in the group was also as high as in women who had undergone radical surgical for treatment of similar tumors.
“The ability to become pregnant seems to be preserved with fertility-sparing surgery, a knowledge that is absolutely critical for the advice and treatment given to young women with ovarian borderline tumors,” says the study’s first author Gry Johansen, doctoral student at the Department of Oncology-Pathology, Karolinska Institutet.
The study is based on data from Sweden’s healthcare registers. Of the 213 women who underwent surgery between 2008 and 2015 in Sweden, 23% had given birth to 62 babies after treatment. A minority — 20 women or 9% of the cohort — had undergone IVF. The survival rate for the entire cohort of 277 women was an excellent 99%, and there was no difference between those who had received FSS and those who had undergone radical surgical cancer treatment.
“In the choice of treatment for borderline ovarian tumors, safety and the effectiveness for future childbearing must be taken into account,” says the study’s last author Kenny Rodriguez-Wallberg, researcher at the Department of Oncology-Pathology, Karolinska Institutet.