Ovarian epithelial tumors of borderline malignancy: A clinical and pathologic study of 109 cases

David G. Bostwick, Henry D. Tazelaar, Samuel C. Ballon, Michael R. Hendrickson, Richard L. Kempson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

213 Scopus citations


One hundred nine cases of ovarian tumors of low malignant potential (borderline tumors) diagnosed at Stanford University Medical Center from 1958 to 1982 were reviewed. The patients ranged in age from 10 to 79 years (mean, 40.5 years). The histologic types and corresponding stages of these neoplasms were 73 serous (Stage IA: 35 patients; Stage IB+C: 16 patients; stage II: 8 patients; Stage III: 14 patients), 30 mucinous (Stage IA: 27 patients; Stage IB+C: 3 patients), and 6 mixed seromucinous (all Stage IA). Borderline endometrioid, clear cell, and Brenner tumors were excluded. Follow‐up information from 3 to 27 years from the time of initial diagnosis (mean, 7.6 years; median, 7.1 years) revealed that 89 patients are alive without further evidence of neoplasm, and three patients died of unrelated disease without recurrent tumor. Seventeen patients have developed persistent or recurrent neoplasms in the contralateral ovary (six patients) and/or elsewhere within the peritoneal cavity (15 patients) at 5 to 226 months (mean, 61 months) after the initial excision. All of the second neoplasms were borderline serous or seromucinous tumors histologically identical to the original tumor; none of the borderline mucinous tumors recurred. Patients who initially had Stage III borderline serous tumors developed persistent or recurrent neoplasms more commonly (64%) than did patients with lower stage tumors (12%). No correlation was found between the development of a subsequent serous neoplasm and patient age, the primary tumor size, or any single histologic feature. Following treatment of the subsequent neoplasms, 13 patients are free of neoplasm, one patient is alive with tumor, one patient has died of intercurrent disease with tumor, and two patients have died with widespread abdominal tumor 53 and 232 months after their initial diagnosis. These findings confirm the excellent prognosis for patients with borderline serous tumors, despite involvement of the peritoneal cavity and the development of recrudescent tumor, although long‐term follow‐up is indicated. Mucinous borderline tumors, as defined by published criteria, almost invariably present as localized (low‐stage) tumors and, in our experience, do not recur when confined to the ovary.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2052-2065
Number of pages14
Issue number9
StatePublished - Nov 1 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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