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Taxanes for Ovarian Cancer during Pregnancy: A Systematic Review

Zagouri F.a · Sergentanis T.N.b · Chrysikos D.b · Filipits M.a · Bartsch R.a
aComprehensive Cancer Center Vienna, Division of Oncology, Department of Medicine I, Medical University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria; b1st Propaedeutic Surgical Department, Hippocrateio Hospital, University of Athens, Athens, Greece Oncology 2012;83:234–238 (DOI:10.1159/000341351)


Objective: Ovarian cancer in pregnancy is uncommon; however, this diagnosis adds complexity to cancer treatment recommendations. This is the first systematic review to synthesize all available data and evaluate the efficacy and safety of taxanes during pregnancy in ovarian cancer. Methods: This systematic review was performed in accordance with PRISMA guidelines. All studies that examined the efficacy and safety of taxanes administered during pregnancy in ovarian cancer, regardless of sample size, were considered eligible. Results: Overall, 8 articles (11 pregnancies, 12 newborns) were retrieved for paclitaxel and 1 for docetaxel (1 pregnancy, 1 newborn). In 92.31% of cases a healthy child was born, with a median follow-up of 20 months. The mean weight of the babies at delivery was 2,381 g. One study providing follow-up until the 11th year of age reported a case of attention deficit disorder. In 6 out of 8 case reports providing survival data, the mother was alive and disease free at the end of follow-up (ranging from 9.75 to 45 months). Conclusion: Taxanes may play a significant role in the treatment of ovarian cancer patients during the 2nd and 3rd trimesters. Before that, the risk of abortion or congenital anomalies is increased.


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