Oncologists use biomarkers—biological characteristics that indicate how well a person responds to a particular treatment—to make decisions about treatments and predict how well a person will respond to additional treatments. Douglas A. Levine, MD, gynecologic oncologist at NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center and director of the Division of Gynecologic Oncology, says the most important biomarker for ovarian cancer is the success of a patient’s first surgery.
“For women with advanced ovarian cancers, some people forget or overlook that your most important biomarker is your initial treatment,” Dr. Levine tells SurvivorNet. “Surgical resection is a very important clinical biomarker, and remains to be the strongest biomarker of outcome for all women with advanced ovarian cancer.”
Other important biomarkers include age, where the treatment is received, and genetics of the tumor.
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