Staging for low malignant potential ovarian tumors: a global perspective

Sherif A.M. Shazly, Shannon K. Laughlin-Tommaso, Sean C. Dowdy, Abimbola O. Famuyide

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Objective We describe current evidence for staging low malignant potential ovarian tumors and their conformity to current consensus guidelines and practice from an international perspective. Data Sources A search of MEDLINE, EMBASE, and SCOPUS databases was conducted for articles published between January 1990 and April 2015. Study Eligibility Criteria Studies on low malignant potential ovarian tumors that evaluated the prognostic value of disease stage, staging vs no staging, complete vs incomplete staging, or discrete components of staging were eligible. Studies that described only crude survival rates were excluded. Study Appraisal and Synthesis Methods Eligible studies were categorized according to their outcome (disease stage, staging procedure, or discrete staging elements). Data were abstracted using a standard form. Inconsistencies on data abstraction were resolved by consensus among the authors. Risk of bias was assessed using the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale. Results Of 1116 studies, 702 were excluded for irrelevance and 364 for not meeting inclusion criteria. Nine studies were excluded for describing crude survival rates without a comparative conclusion. We found that studies supporting the value of defining disease stage or staging procedures (mostly conducted in northern Europe) included more patients than studies that did not find disease stage or staging useful (predominantly from North America, 4072 vs 3951). Disease stage correlated with survival in 13 of 25 studies, whereas none of the studies that evaluated the value of staging found it beneficial (9 studies, 1979 patients). Studies that evaluated isolated components of staging found no benefit to these procedures. Regional guidelines and consensus reviews drew conclusions based on a limited number of studies that generally originated from the same region. Conclusions Although the correlation of stage with survival was mixed, performing staging procedures for low malignant potential ovarian tumors is not supported by the best available evidence. Guidelines in support of staging based their recommendations on a few regional studies and conflict with better-quality data that do not support staging procedures. An international consensus statement is needed to standardize the surgical management of low malignant potential ovarian tumors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)153-168.e2
JournalAmerican journal of obstetrics and gynecology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016


  • borderline ovarian tumors
  • surgical staging
  • systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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