Ovarian Cancer

Nearly 600 new cases of ovarian, fallopian tube or peritoneal cancer are diagnosed in Finland annually. In the initial phase, the disease is often symptom-free; the most common symptoms that manifest in later phases include abdominal swelling due to liquid build-up in the abdominal cavity and abdominal pain. The primary course of treatment is surgery combined with chemotherapy. Approximately half the patients are alive five years from their diagnosis.

Ovarian cancer patients’ surgical and chemotherapies as well as monitoring take place in special health care of up to three years. We aim to start the implementation of surgical treatment and other treatment at Tays as soon as possible but at the latest within four weeks of the arrival of the referral.

Examinations and referral to Tays

Examinations are usually started based on the symptoms at the health centre or private practitioner surgery. Symptom-free ovarian cancer in its initial stage is often discovered by chance in a routine gynaecological examination.

The initial examinations usually include a full-body CT scan and blood tests, such as for tumour markers. These can be arranged for the patient based on the referral.

Treatment of ovarian cancer

Based on the referral, we arrange an appointment for the patient at the surgery of a doctor specialising in the treatment of gynaecological cancer. During the outpatient clinic visit, we prepare an assessment of the spread and nature of the disease and plan its treatment.

Usually, the treatment involves surgery with the aim of removing the tumorous changes to the abdominal cavity. Typically, we remove the uterus and ovaries, lymph nodes and omentum. After the surgery, the disease is treated with chemotherapy.

On occasions, we confirm the diagnosis and status of the disease with an endoscopy of the abdominal cavity. In such cases, we start the chemotherapy of the patient immediately and perform more extensive surgery after three chemotherapy sessions.

Monitoring

Even in the case of ovarian cancer that has spread, the treatment results after the surgery and chemotherapy are usually good. The disease involves, however, a considerable recurrence tendency, so monitoring takes place in special health care. A recurred disease is usually treated with chemotherapy.

Vastuuhenkilöt

Osastonylilääkäri Annika Auranen
Apulaisylilääkäri Maarit Vuento