Borderline ovarian tumors (BOTs) are less common than epithelial ovarian cancers (EOCs). Low-grade EOCs (LG-EOCs) occur even less frequently than BOTs. After primary therapy, recurrence rates of BOTs and LG-EOCs are significantly lower and the stage-adjusted survival is higher than for high-grade EOCs. Thus, determining the best management in terms of traditional ovarian cancer staging and debulking procedures is more challenging and has been recently brought to question. This article reviews the particulars of BOTs and LG-EOCs, their similarities and differences, and how they are best managed and treated, and emphasizes the major role of surgery and the controversial role of chemotherapy. Because these tumors disproportionately affect younger women, this review addresses ovarian preservation in circumstances when fertility or hormonal preservation is desired.
Correspondence: Carolyn Johnston, MD, Division of Gynecologic Oncology, University of Michigan, 1500 East Medical Center Drive, WH-L4606, Ann Arbor, MI 48109. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org