UK Familial Ovarian Cancer Screening Study (UK FOCSS) results
Ovarian cancer screening one step closer
Trials find nine out of ten tumours
Screening for ovarian cancer picked up 90 per cent of cases of the ‘silent killer’ making widespread testing feasible scientists said.
Ovarian canceris very difficult to detect early because of vague symptoms leading many experts to call it thesilent killer. There are around7,000cases of ovarian cancer in the UK each year and about4,500deaths.
Scientists at University College London carried out the largest ever randomised trial ofovarian screeningtests. They usedblood teststo detect a protein that is produced by someovarian tumourscombined withultrasoundor ultrasound alone. The study involved202,638 womenaged between 50 and 74 who were recruited from across the UK between 2001 and 2005. The study is ongoing and the women will be testing until 2012 and followed up until 2014.
Almost half of thecancersdetected were in the early stages when they are consideredmost treatableand normally without screening only around 28 per cent are found at this stage.
Peter Reynolds, Chief Executive, Ovarian Cancer Action, said: ‘The initial findings of this long-term study are encouraging, particularly because almost half of theovarian cancersdetected were at anearly stage(stage 1), when survival rates can be as high as90 per cent.
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