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Ovarian Cancer Treatment Guidelines Developed for Physicians Now Translated for Patients; Guidelines Provide Up-To-Date Treatment Advice Based on Research

September is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

PHILADELPHIA (September 17, 2002) -- The American Cancer Society (ACS) and the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) have published a new handbook to help women with ovarian cancer make informed decisions about their treatment. Ovarian Cancer Treatment Guidelines for Patients is a companion to the NCCN professional guidelines that are used by the nation's top cancer specialists including those at Fox Chase Cancer Center, a founding member institution of the NCCN. The guidelines provide the most up-to-date information about treatment options for ovarian cancer and are written in easy-to-understand language.

"In the search for information about ovarian cancer treatment, many patients search the Internet and monitor news reports and frequently come up with confusing and conflicting information," said Robert F. Ozols, M.D., Ph.D., senior vice-president of medical science at Fox Chase Cancer Center and a member of the NCCN treatment guidelines development panel. "These guidelines offer clear treatment options that are based on the very latest clinical research. A woman can review the guidelines in the privacy of her own home and take an active role in making treatment decisions with her physician." Ozols is recognized as an international leader in the treatment of ovarian cancer.

The treatment options for different stages of cancer are presented as flow charts. For each stage, the chart shows step by step how the patient and doctor can arrive at choices about treatment.

The flow charts are broken down into the following categories:

� work-up (the tests done to help determine the initial ovarian cancer diagnosis)

� cancer stage (stages indicate if and how far ovarian cancer has spread to nearby tissues and to other organs)

� treatment options

� and follow-up

Because each patient's situation is unique and must be evaluated individually, ovarian cancer patients are encouraged to ask their doctor the following questions:

1. What is the stage of my cancer?

2. Was all the cancer removed by surgery?

3. What is my tumor's grade (how abnormal do the cells appear)?

4. How does the stage and grade of my cancer affect my outlook for cure?

5. What are my treatment options? Is there a clinical trail for which I am eligible?

6. What are the risks or side effects associated with each of my treatment options and how will they affect my quality of life?

According to the American Cancer Society, ovarian cancer is the second most common gynecological cancer among women in the United States. The ACS estimates that there will be 23,300 new cases of ovarian cancer in this country in 2002, and about 13,900 women will die of the disease.

To obtain free copies of the patient version of the ovarian cancer guidelines, contact the National Comprehensive Cancer Network at 1-888-909-NCCN or the American Cancer Society at 1-800-ACS-2345. You may also visit their web sites at or

Other available patient guidelines include topics on: breast cancer, colon cancer, prostate cancer, cancer pain management, nausea and vomiting, and cancer-related fatigue. Several of the guidelines are also available in Spanish.

Fox Chase Cancer Center, one of the nation's first comprehensive cancer centers designated by the National Cancer Institute in 1974, conducts basic and clinical research; programs of prevention, detection and treatment of cancer; and community outreach. For more information about Fox Chase activities, visit the Center's web site at

Fox Chase Cancer Center, part of the Temple University Health System, is one of the leading cancer research and treatment centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as one of the nation’s first cancer hospitals, Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. Fox Chase researchers have won the highest awards in their fields, including two Nobel Prizes. Fox Chase physicians are also routinely recognized in national rankings, and the Center’s nursing program has received the Magnet recognition for excellence four consecutive times. Today, Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach.  For more information, call 1-888-FOX CHASE or (1-888-369-2427).

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