Webinar: What Women Need to Know about Ovarian Cancer

Tue, May 12
12:00pm to 1:00pm ET

Description

Mayo Clinic gynecologic cancer specialists Jamie N. Bakkum-Gamez, M.D. and John Weroha, M.D., Ph.D. discuss the signs and symptoms women should be aware of for detection of ovarian cancer, understanding treatment options, and the importance of new clinical trials. Mayo Clinic medical geneticist Myra J. Wick, M.D., Ph.D. discusses the importance of family history and genetic counseling in preventing ovarian cancer. A live question and answer session followed the presentation. You can still ask questions using the chat box to the right. Speakers include: - Jamie N. Bakkum-Gamez, M.D. - John Weroha, M.D., Ph.D. - Myra J. Wick, M.D., Ph.D. Would you like to: Request An Appointment Learn More About Ovarian Cancer

Location

Online
@shirleyahweb

I had my surgery at Mayo Rochester within the last year. Stage IIIC. Were my cells preserved so I am eligible for the Avatar study…or is it too late entirely?

Jump to this post

If you enrolled in Mayo’s tissue/blood repository for ovarian cancer when you had your surgery, a portion of your tumor was retained for research purposes. The contact person and phone number for more information is on your informed consent form. You can also contact the study coordinator through Mayo’s Cancer Center Clinical Trial Office at 855-776-0015 (toll-free) or at http://www.mayo.edu/research/clinical-trials.

If you signed consent in 2014 or 2015, we are working hard to include as many patients as possible. If everything works out as I hope, someone may contact you about the Ovatar trial if certain criteria are met.

REPLY
@lisa1961

Are there other clinical studies available if surgery was done elsewhere? Or could 2nd surgery qualify for Avatar?

Jump to this post

There are several clinical studies available for women with ovarian cancer. For a list of available trials at Mayo Clinic and more details on eligibility criteria, please see: http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/ovarian-cancer/care-at-mayo-clinic/clinical-trials/con-20028096.
There is a clinical trial open at Mayo (MC1464; clinicaltrials.gov identifier: NCT02283658) for women with recurrent ovarian cancer. This is a phase II study in which women with hormone receptor positive ovarian cancer are treated with everolimus and letrozole. As part of the study, an Avatar is made. The Avatar in this study is not used to predict response to other chemotherapies; it is used to better understand the response of the woman’s cancer to the study drugs—everolimus and letrozole. More details on this study can be found at: https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02283658?term=MC1464&rank=1.

REPLY
@jenarymcgee

I’m BRCA 1 and 2 negative (and for Lynch Syndrome mutations), but my family history of ovarian cancer is very extensive with earliest onset at age 39. Is Mayo Clinic – or are other organizations you’re aware of – doing any research into additional genetic mutations? And how far away do you think we realistically are from having an “OVCA” type genetic test?

Jump to this post

You may consider clinical cancer panel testing, which is available through some commercial laboratories. There are also researchers at Mayo studying other genes and mutations in those genes. Results of research studies are often not returned to the patients.

REPLY
@lorirand

My mother had stage 4 ovarian cancer. My PCP is recommending that I have salpingo-oophorectomy since I am postmenopausal. She does not want to do genetic testing as she says is it unrealiable. Is this what you could recommend?

Jump to this post

Recommend consultation with genetics professional to review family history review your risk.

REPLY
@sharonwaters221

Is there a diet (certain foods) I should follow to help reduce risk of ovarian cancer?

Jump to this post

Dietary risk factors have not been identified for ovarian cancer.

REPLY
@djsetzer

My paternal grandmother and several paternal great aunts died of breast cancer (no genetic testing). My mother was diagnosed with ovarian cancer at 70. She is still living but has not had genetic testing. Should I have the testing since the breast cancer comes from my father’s side? Or should my father have the testing?

Jump to this post

There is risk from both sides of the family. Are any of the paternal aunts available for testing? Testing of an affected paternal aunt would be most informative for assessing paternal side of the family. Also recommend that your mother have BRCA1/2 testing, since she has a personal history of ovarian cancer.

REPLY
@bluhmcd

I have stage 4 and have my first recurrence. I’m doing low dose carbo/taxol treatments and am unable to be some treatments because my wbc count and anc are too low. What can I do to boost my immune system?

Jump to this post

This is a very common question and one with no good answers. The best way to boost the immune system is with a medication called Neupogen (assuming the low dose chemo is weekly) or Neulasta (if the chemo is every 3 weeks) but this isn’t something you can do on your own and would require a prescription. I think the question you raise is referring to vitamins, certain foods, or complimentary medicine ways to boost the immune system. I’m not aware of anything non-prescription therapy that can overcome the immunosupressive activity of chemotherapy.

REPLY
@elainefowler

Would you recommend an annual ultrasound and a CA125 test? My doctor used to prescribe this but now says it’s not necessary?

Jump to this post

The United States Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) does not recommend screening (ultrasound and CA125) for average risk women. As such, these tests are not recommended for the general population of women (ovarian cancer risk 1.4% in lifetime). This is because in average risk women, these tests have not yet been shown to detect ovarian cancer at early stages. However, in those women at high risk of ovarian cancer development (BRCA, family history of ovarian cancer), the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) recommends every 6 month ultrasound and CA125 until a woman is ready for risk reducing surgery to remove her ovaries and tubes.

REPLY
@karenh

Stage
3C recurrent at 44 yrs old. Was in remission for a little over a year. Genetic testing was all negative. Are there any new studies showing cure in these types of scenarios? I’m being told at this point there won’t be cure.

Jump to this post

Thank you for sharing your experience with ovarian cancer. This question comes up daily. Durable remissions have been observed in women with recurrent ovarian cancer. This doesn’t mean the cancer is gone forever (cured) but it means we can’t see the cancer with any of our tests, which is the next best thing. If long-term remission is not achieved, the cancer can still be treated. Clinical trials increase the treatment options.

REPLY
@theodoreanthony

What is the difference between the Avatar trial vs the ChemoFx testing? I am familiar with Chemofx. Aren’t they already testing live cells up against approved recurrent therapies? What your thoughts?

Jump to this post

Studies have shown that cancer cells respond differently to chemotherapy when they are grown in 2D (in a petri dish as is what happens with ChemoFx) v. 3D (as a structured tumor as is what happens in an Avatar). Some chemotherapies that are not active against cells grown in a dish are active against cells grown as a tumor, and vice versa. It is thought that 3D tumors grown respond more like the tumors in the human body. The Avatar study will help better understand this. Although ChemoFx is commercially available, the American Society of Clinical Oncology has reviewed the data and experts have come to the conclusion that these tests should not be used in general clinical practice and further investigation is needed in a clinical trial setting. I have not used this test in my practice.

REPLY
@momatat

breast cancer survivor- BRCA1/2 negative. having pain in abdomin, urgency, back pain would CA 125 clarify

Jump to this post

Recommend evaluation by your care provider.

REPLY
@gill

I live in UK and have Ovarian Cancer Stage3. Our survival rates are some of the poorest in Europe. Firstly what chemotherapy or drugs would you use on a second recurrence. Avastin is only used for first recurrence here. Are there any other drugs beside chemotherapy that you try to keep the disease stable between treatments.

Jump to this post

For this question, I would refer you to the http://www.NCCN.org guidelines for a comprehensive list of treatment options. Mayo Clinic is a member of NCCN.

REPLY
Please sign in or register to post a reply.