Comprehensive Ovarian Cancer Program
Ovarian cancer is the second most common type of gynecological cancer and the one responsible for the most deaths: ovarian cancer diagnoses are scary. Successful treatment often depends on an accurate diagnosis as soon as possible and multiple specialists working together on a treatment plan.
Our Comprehensive Ovarian Cancer Program was the first in the Southeast to combine a cancer nurse-navigator guided patient journey with comprehensive care – a patient-specific approach that goes beyond simply attacking cancer cells.
Previvorship Care and Preparation for Treatment
There is no way to screen for ovarian cancer, so one focus of our program is to identify it early and reduce patients’ risk. Our “previvorship” care helps patients make informed decisions about their health. Patients may benefit from genetic testing as part of our gynecologic cancer risk assessment clinic. The risk-factor education and clinical solutions we share may also reduce the chances of future diagnosis.
If you are diagnosed with ovarian cancer, we help you prepare your body for treatment success. Each patient visits with a registered dietician prior to starting treatment to identify goals for caloric and protein needs to prevent malnutrition, restore digestive health, and optimize the treatment regimen.
Advanced Treatment Approach
Ovarian cancer care is delivered by an experienced team of physicians trained in surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation and supported by a dedicated group of advanced practice providers, nurses, and specialty staff. We offer the latest minimally invasive and open surgical techniques, including robotic procedures and complex radical surgery.
Patients receive their care within the UAB Women & Infants Center, a beautiful state-of-the-art clinical, chemoinfusion, and inpatient facility designed and dedicated specifically for women’s health.
Here are just some of the clinical treatment strategies we use for ovarian cancer:
- Chemotherapy, including intraperitoneal chemotherapy
- Radiation therapy
- Targeted therapies
- Hormonal therapy
- Genomic testing and personalized medicine
Clinical Trials – Unique Treatment Opportunities
UAB is the only institution to be awarded a Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) in both Ovarian Cancer and Cervical Cancer by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Our patients have access to leading-edge ovarian cancer treatments being studied in clinical trials. Over 300 of our gynecological cancer patients have been enrolled in clinical trials led by our research teams.
Care Beyond Conventional Treatment: Support Services and Programs
Ovarian cancer impacts your physical, emotional, and social life. We combine the latest conventional treatments above with flexible supportive care and survivorship programs to adapt to every step of your journey as your needs change. Our patients and their loved ones are supported by an array of mental health professionals, social workers, physical and occupational therapists, arts in medicine teachers, chaplains, and other providers who care for them holistically. Explore some of our support services and programs here.
Ovarian cancer survivors may have difficulty conceiving. But thanks to our collaboration with UAB Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility Services, patients have several options to preserve or restore their fertility, so that they may start a family after they complete their cancer treatment. These options include:
- In vitro fertilization (IVF) and embryo freezing
- IVF and egg freezing
- Ovarian tissue freezing
View important updates for patients about the Alabama Supreme Court’s ruling that caused UAB to pause in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatments that involve egg fertilization or embryo development.
A cancer survivor is anyone who has been diagnosed with cancer. You are still our patient whether or not you are receiving active treatment. Mental and physical challenges of cancer are not limited to times of active treatment. Our Supportive Care Clinic is a resource for patients throughout survivorship.