New surgery helps prevent ovarian cancer

New surgery helps prevent ovarian cancer

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by Cathy Marshall, KGW Staff

kgw.com

Posted on February 7, 2013 at 7:06 AM

Updated Thursday, Feb 7 at 10:38 AM

PORTLAND - Doctors at a Portland hospital have joined some others across the nation and Canada in following a new recommendation aimed at preventing one of the deadliest forms of cancer in women.

“This is something so simple that could save a lot of lives,” said Dr. Nathalie Johnson, the Medical Director of the Legacy Cancer Institute. Johnson is recommending women who have tubal ligations or hysterectomies have their fallopian tubes removed.

"It’s because researchers have found the tubes attract cancer cells which can eventually encase the ovary," she says. "You could actually find a normal ovary wrapped in cancer and realize the cancer was starting in the fallopian tube and not the ovary."

The recommendation is supported by research on thousands of women. Legacy researcher Dr. Ann Smith-Shedev has studied the connection for more than a decade.

“We think this could cut the most common type of ovarian cancer by up to 70 percent,” she says.

The Legacy Cancer Institute is the first program in Oregon to make the recommendation that women consider the fallopian tube removal if they’re scheduling a tubal ligation or hysterectomy.

“We’d like to raise awareness and hopefully it can become the standard here in Oregon and across the country,” concluded Johnson.

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