Ovarian Cancer

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The subject of the Sixth Symposium on Clinical Oncology of the Royal College of Radiologists held in February 1984 was ovarian cancer. This publication presents the collected papers delivered at that meeting, but excludes much useful discussion which also took place. The annual clinical oncology symposia have been designed to re- view topics of current interest in cancer therapy from a multidis- ciplinary point if view. It was gratifying to the organisers and all who took part that the aims were so well met by both the contrib- utors and discussants. We believe that this can only be to the ad- vantage of future research and our present and future patients. Ovarian cancer is a common gynaecological cancer which freqently presents late. Its clinical management is bedevilled by the variable referral routes through which patients present for treatment. Thus, many are first seen by general abdominal sur- geons who may not be expert in their treatment, rather than gynaecologists or gynaecological oncologists. There are many in- teresting features about it which have been discussed by the var- ious speakers. Early spread within the abdomen is common, spread outside the abdomen less common. There is a variety of histopathological types, each with distinct aetiological, prognos- VI Preface tic and therapeutic assocations. In contrast to most cancers, sur- gical debulking of tumour is considered valuable even when there is no possibility of removing all tumour by the knife.