Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Difficult clinical decisions in gynecological oncology: identifying priorities for future clinical research
  1. J. D. Harrison*,
  2. J. Carter,
  3. J. M. Young* and
  4. M. J. Solomon*
  1. *Surgical Outcomes Research Centre, Sydney South West Area Health Service and the University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
  2. Sydney Gynaecologic Oncology Group, Sydney Cancer Centre, and the University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
  1. Address correspondence and reprint requests to: James D. Harrison, BSc (Hons), MPH, Surgical Outcomes Research Centre, P.O. Box M157, Missenden Road, NSW 2050, Sydney, Australia. Email: james.harrison{at}


This study investigates the acceptability and feasibility of conducting randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in gynecological oncology by ascertaining the views of the Australian Society of Gynaecologic Oncologists (ASGO) about important clinical questions in this field, current treatment preferences, and willingness to participate in trials to address these questions. Members of ASGO received a mailed survey. Thirty-one gyneoncologists participated in this study (79% response fraction). There was considerable support for an RCT (81%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 63–93%) to compare sentinel node biopsy with total groin dissection for women with vulval cancer. This clinical question was also rated as “extremely” or “very” important by 91% (95% CI, 74–98%) of respondents, who also indicated high levels of individual equipoise. Another priority for research involved the use of second-line chemotherapy for women who have rising CA125 titers. This clinical question was rated as extremely or very important by 71% (95% CI, 52–86%), exhibited high levels of individual equipoise, with 74% (95% CI, 55–88%) of respondents willing to participate in an RCT to address this issue. The conduct of surveys of representative groups of clinicians provides useful empirical data to focus clinical research efforts where they are most likely to be successful based on equipoise, feasibility, and clinical interest.

  • feasibility
  • gynecologic oncology
  • randomized controlled trials (RCTs)

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.