European Journal of Surgical Oncology vol:36 issue:suppl. 1 pages:108-114
Quality of surgery is one of the most important determinants of the outcome in ovarian cancer patients. Surgery by a gynaecological oncologist in a specialised, high-volume environment and removal of all visible tumours are associated with a higher likelihood of favourable outcome for patients with advanced-stage ovarian cancer. Population-based studies in Europe however show that a substantial number of patients do not receive optimal surgical care. Less than half of the patients suffering from advanced-stage ovarian cancer are operated by a gynaecological oncologists. Also the proportion of patients operated in a high-volume or specialised hospital is lower than 50%. In a substantial number of patients, minimum standard procedures are not performed and optimal tumor debulking is not achieved. To improve the quality of care, efforts are needed to develop and implement robust evidence-based European guidelines, provide surgical training for gynaecological oncologists and establish comprehensive cancer networks with sufficient resources.