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Advanced ovarian yolk sac tumor: upfront surgery or neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by interval debulking?


Objective To compare surgery and survival outcomes between neoadjuvant chemotherapy and primary debulking surgery in patients with advanced ovarian yolk sac tumor.

Methods In this retrospective cohort analysis, patients with stage III to IV ovarian yolk sac tumor or mixed germ cell tumors containing yolk sac tumor elements, and who underwent surgery at Peking Union Medical College Hospital between January 2011 and December 2021, were identified. Patient characteristics, treatment, and survival data were analyzed between the two groups.

Results A total of 40 patients were enrolled: 19 patients received neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by interval surgery, and 21 patients were treated with primary debulking surgery. After neoadjuvant chemotherapy, the surgical conditions of patients were improved. All patients achieved cytoreduction to R0 or R1 at interval surgery. No statistical difference was found in 3-year disease-free survival and overall survival between the neoadjuvant chemotherapy group and the primary debulking surgery group (log rank p=0.4 and 0.94). Patients had less blood loss (328.4 vs 1285.7 mL, p=0.029), lower transfusion volume (1044.4 vs 3066.7 mL, p=0.011), and fewer peri-operative complications (15.8% vs 47.6%, p=0.032) at the interval debulking surgery after neoadjuvant chemotherapy compared with patients who underwent primary debulking surgery.

Conclusion For patients with advanced-stage ovarian yolk sac tumor, neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by interval surgery is an alternative option, especially for those who cannot tolerate the primary debulking surgery because of high tumor burden and vulnerable status.

  • Genital Neoplasms, Female
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Surgery
  • Cytoreduction surgical procedures

Data availability statement

All data relevant to the study are included in the article or uploaded as supplementary information.

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