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Ovarian Cancer Treatment

Learn how genetic test results may affect medical decisions about cancer treatment.”

Treatment decisions for people with hereditary ovarian cancer

Ovarian, fallopian tube, and primary peritoneal cancers are very closely related cancers that have been linked to several different inherited mutations. One out of every five women with ovarian cancer will test positive for an inherited mutation. For this reason, every woman diagnosed with ovarian cancer meets national expert guidelines for genetic counseling and testing for an inherited mutation. 

Women with a BRCA or other mutation who develop cancer may benefit from new treatments or qualify for specific clinical trials. There are two FDA approved drugs for some women with hereditary ovarian cancer. Lynparza (also known as olaparib) is approved to treat ovarian, fallopian tube, and primary peritoneal cancer in women who carry mutations in BRCA1 or BRCA2, and who have received three or more chemotherapy treatments. Rubraca (also known as rucaparib) is approved to treat women with advanced ovarian cancer who have had two or more prior treatment and who have inherited mutations in BRCA or whose tumors have BRCA mutations as detected by the FoundationFocus CDxBRCA companion diagnostic. There are also ongoing clinical trials specifically designed for women with ovarian cancer who have an inherited mutation. 

If you are an ovarian cancer survivor who carries an inherited mutation, ask your doctor if you qualify for any new treatments or clinical trials based on your genetic mutation status. If you are interested in the possibility of participating in a clinical trial, it is best to express your interest when you are first diagnosed or have a recurrence and before you start treatment. Some studies have restrictions on the number or types of cancer treatments previously received by trial participants. 

Updated 05/23/17


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