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Ovarian cancer

Ovarian cancer occurs in or near the ovaries. The ovaries are two small organs on either side of the uterus that produce eggs, as well as the hormones oestrogen and progesterone to regulate the menstrual cycle and the development of female physical characteristics.

What is ovarian cancer ?

We now know that ovarian cancer is not a single disease, but a variety of cancers that share a location in or near the ovaries, and that many of these cancers arise from cells outside the ovary. Up to 80% of ovarian cancer deaths are caused by high-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSC), but this mostly arises from cells of the fallopian tube spreading to the ovary.

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Key Statistics

75%

75%

Ovarian cancer is rarely diagnosed in the early stages and around 75% of patients present with advanced cancer at diagnosis

35–40%

35–40%

Survival has little improved over the last 20 years and only 35–40% are likely to survive for five years

Top 5

Top 5

Ovarian cancer is the fifth most common cause of cancer deaths in Western women

100,000

100,000

Globally an estimated 100,000 women die each year from recurrent ovarian cancer

Ovarian cancer research at Garvan

Garvan has examined the role of genetic mutations as a gateway for improving treatment for women with ovarian cancer, as well as reducing risk in their female relatives.

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