JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Outcomes following percutaneous upper gastrointestinal decompressive tube placement for malignant bowel obstruction in ovarian cancer.

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to evaluate peri-operative and survival outcomes of ovarian cancer patients undergoing percutaneous upper gastrointestinal decompression for malignant bowel obstruction (MBO).

METHODS: Retrospective chart review was used to identify patients with ovarian, peritoneal, or fallopian tube cancer who underwent palliative decompressive treatment for MBO from 1/2002 to 12/2010. Kaplan-Meier methods were used to estimate the median survival (MS) and multivariate analysis used to determine if any variables were associated with the hazard of death.

RESULTS: Fifty-three patients met inclusion criteria. Median length of diagnosis prior to intervention was 21 months. Fifteen (28.3%) patients experienced complications and 9 required revision. Forty-nine (92.5%) experienced relief of symptoms after placement, and 91% tolerated some form of oral intake. Following placement, 19 (36%) patients received additional chemotherapy and 21(41%) patients received total parental nutrition (TPN). Thirty-five patients were discharged home/outpatient facility, 16 to hospice care, and 2 died prior to discharge. MS for all patients was 46 days. Patients who received chemotherapy had a MS of 169 days compared to 33 days (p<0.001). We failed to find an association between survival and TPN or performance status.

CONCLUSIONS: Malignant bowel obstruction is a common complication of ovarian cancer. Management is palliative; risks and benefits of any therapy must be considered. Percutaneous decompressive therapy provides relief from associated symptoms, and allows patients to be discharged home. Median survival in this group is limited, and decisions regarding aggressive therapy should be individualized.

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