The objectives of this study were to evaluate the current evidence of the association of endometriosis and subsequent carcinoma of the ovary and to contextualize this evidence into daily practice issues.
This study is a critical review of observational and in vitro studies.
Although the lifetime risk for ovarian cancer is low in general population and remains low in the broad spectrum of endometriosis, there may be clusters of individuals at higher risk of oncogenesis, whose identification would allow individualized surveillance and prophylactic interventions. Prevalence studies show that specific subtypes of ovarian cancer predominate in women with endometriosis. This has been validated in pathogenetic, genomic, immunobiologic, and hormonal studies.
Taken together, these data provide a strong rationale for identifying, monitoring, counseling, and treating women with endometriosis who are at highest risk for cancer conversion.