Maurie Markman, MD, president of Medicine and Science, Cancer Treatment Centers of America, editor-in-chief, OncologyLive, and 2018 Giant of Cancer Care for Gynecological Cancers, discusses the treatment of ovarian cancer as a chronic disease.
Maurie Markman, MD, president of Medicine and Science, Cancer Treatment Centers of America, editor-in-chief, OncologyLive, and 2018 Giant of Cancer Care® for Gynecological Cancers, discusses the shifting paradigm of ovarian cancer management.
In many ways, ovarian cancer research has led to advances in other tumor types, Markman says. This was especially true in the “earliest days” of treatment, when platinum-based chemotherapy and paclitaxel were introduced into the ovarian cancer paradigm; these important agents are now used in the treatment of other diseases as well.
Increasingly, more effective therapies are becoming available, he adds. For example, 3 PARP inhibitors were recently approved by the FDA for the treatment of patients with ovarian cancer: olaparib (Lynparza), rucaparib (Rubraca), and niraparib (Zejula). With so many options available, physicians are able to manage ovarian cancer as a chronic illness.
Five years ago, thoracic oncologists would not have thought this would be possible with lung cancer, but the introduction of effective immunotherapies and targeted agents has moved that field in the same direction, Markman notes.
Although the ultimate goal is to cure these patients, oncologists can be very effective at managing their patients’ cancer over an increasingly long period of time and, at the same time, optimizing their quality of life.