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Ovarian Cancer

Ovarian cancer ranks fifth in cancer deaths among U.S. women. At the early stages of this disease many women are asymptomatic or experience symptoms attributable to other health issues. As a result, most women with ovarian cancer are not diagnosed early, when they are most treatable and survival rates are highest.

The majority (85 to 90 percent) of malignant ovarian cancers are epithelial ovarian carcinomas, which are classified into different types. The most common is the serous type (52 percent), which can include high-grade and low-grade tumors. Other types of malignant epithelial ovarian cancers include clear cell (6 percent), endometrioid (10 percent), and mucinous (6 percent).

As knowledge of the molecular biology of ovarian cancer grows, molecular biomarker testing has become increasingly important. Recent recommended guideline recommendations call for all women with ovarian cancer to be offered BRCA testing. However, it is estimated that only 10 to 32 percent of patients have had such testing performed. Identification of BRCA mutations through early testing is critical in ovarian cancer to identify both somatic (acquired mutation) and germline (inherited) BRCA mutations as this information may inform treatment decision-making.

Barriers to Quality Care in Ovarian Cancer

The Barriers to Quality Care in Ovarian Cancer education project will look at coordination and communication within the multidisciplinary cancer care team to help cancer programs and practices better understand existing barriers in care delivery for patients with advanced epithelial ovarian cancer across different settings of care. Guided by an expert Steering Committee and facilitated by ACCC, three cancer programs will create and pilot process improvement plans that address specific barriers and/or gaps in care for this patient population.

Optimizing Outcomes in Ovarian Cancer Using Personalized Medicine

The Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) and Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) will jointly offer four accredited webinars (live and enduring) and up to six additional non-accredited media presentations (podcasts, clinical reviews) on the topic of delivering personalized medicine in a community setting. The educational programs launched in June 2021 and will continue on a monthly rotation over the course of the year.