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Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy for Recurrent Epithelial Ovarian Cancer Is Feasible With High Completion Rates, Low Complications, and Acceptable Patient Outcomes
  1. Malgorzata E. Skaznik-Wikiel, MD*,
  2. Jamie L. Lesnock, MD*,
  3. William C. McBee, MD*,
  4. Sushil Beriwal, MD,
  5. Kristin K. Zorn, MD*,
  6. Scott D. Richard, MD*,
  7. Thomas C. Krivak, MD* and
  8. Robert P. Edwards, MD*
  1. *Division of Gynecologic Oncology and
  2. Department of Radiation Oncology, Magee-Womens Hospital of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA.
  1. Address correspondence and reprint requests to Malgorzata E. Skaznik-Wikiel, MD, Division of Gynecologic Oncology, Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC, 300 Halket St, Pittsburgh, PA 15213. E-mail:


Objectives Three large randomized clinical trials have shown a survival benefit for patients treated with intraperitoneal (IP) compared with intravenous chemotherapy for advanced stage epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC). However, the use of IP chemotherapy in recurrent EOC is controversial. The purpose of this study was to determine outcomes, completion rates, and frequency of complications in patients with platinum-sensitive recurrent EOC treated with IP chemotherapy.

Methods A retrospective, single-institution analysis of women who received IP chemotherapy for recurrent EOC from January 2003 to April 2010 was conducted. Study patients were identified from the Tumor Registry and office records. Demographic factors, stage, histology, surgical findings, cytoreduction status, and subsequent therapies were abstracted. Progression-free (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were estimated by Kaplan-Meier methods.

Results Fifty-six women who received IP chemotherapy for their first EOC recurrence were identified. The mean age of patients was 56.7 years (range, 40–79 y). Fifty-five patients (98.3%) had previously completed at least 6 cycles of intravenous chemotherapy. Of all patients, 87.5% were initially diagnosed with advanced stage disease (stage IIA–IV). All patients underwent secondary cytoreduction at the time of IP port placement. Moreover, 67.9% of patients were considered optimally cytoreduced (<1 cm residual disease) at the end of the secondary debulking surgery. Forty-two patients (75%) were able to successfully complete at least 6 cycles of IP chemotherapy. Reasons for noncompletion were disease progression, allergic reaction, renal failure, pain, severe nausea and vomiting, death, and patient refusal. Six patients (10.7%) developed port complications including pain around port site, port malfunction, and port erosion into small bowel. Median PFS since the initiation of IP chemotherapy was 10.5 months (95% confidence interval, 7.5–16.4 months) and median OS was 51 months (95% confidence interval, 40.8–61.1 months).

Conclusions Intraperitoneal chemotherapy is a feasible option for patients with recurrent EOC, with high completion rates, low frequency of complications, and acceptable PFS and OS.

  • Intraperitoneal chemotherapy
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Intravenous chemotherapy

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  • The authors have no disclosures.

  • This study was presented at the Society of Gynecologic Oncologists Annual Meeting on Women’s Cancer, March 6–9, 2011; Orlando, FL.