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What are the long-term costs and benefits of screening for ovarian cancer amongst postmenopausal women?

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posted on 25.02.2020 by Benjamin Kearns
Background

Within the United Kingdom, ovarian cancer is among the top-five leading causes of female cancer deaths. Diagnosis is often after the disease has progressed to an advanced stage. If screening can detect ovarian cancer earlier at a less advanced stage, it may lead to improvements in survival.

The United Kingdom Collaborative Trial of Ovarian Cancer Screening (UKCTOCS) evaluated the impact of screening on ovarian cancer mortality. Over 200,000 women were enrolled and randomised to either no screening, ultrasound screening or multimodal screening (MMS). Results based on a median follow-up of 11.1 years did not show any statistically significant reduction in mortality amongst women in either screening arm. However, a potential delayed effect of screening was noted, with calls for further follow-up to fully assess the extent of the mortality reductions. The primary objective of this study was to evaluate the potential long-term costs and benefits of screening for ovarian cancer in the United Kingdom. The focus here is on comparing MMS (the most effective screening strategy) with no screening

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