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Cheers for the largest worldwide ovarian cancer screening trial

Specialist gynaecological nurse Tracie Miles reflects on the findings of the UK Collaborative Trial of Ovarian Cancer Screening

Excitement began to build just before Christmas with publication of the results of the biggest ever ovarian cancer screening trial – the UK Collaborative Trial of Ovarian Cancer Screening (UKCTOCS) – which found that deaths from ovarian cancer could be reduced by up to one fifth. Ovarian cancer is a brutal disease with only 46% of women diagnosed surviving for five or more years. Any steps to change these devastating statistics are welcomed by me as a gynaecological cancer specialist nurse who sees new, individual tragedies every day.

The UKCTOCS trial represents amazing achievements on many levels. It ran for over 15 years and successfully recruited more than 200,000 post-menopausal women to a randomised controlled trial in which they went through one of two types of screening method (blood test or ultrasound) or no screening (the current situation worldwide). The aim of the trial was to investigate whether annual


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