A preoperative personalized risk assessment calculator for elderly ovarian cancer patients undergoing primary cytoreductive surgery

Emma L. Barber*, Sarah Rutstein, William C. Miller, Paola A. Gehrig

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Objective Cytoreductive surgery for ovarian cancer has higher rates of postoperative complication than neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by surgery. If patients at high risk of postoperative complication were identified preoperatively, primary therapy could be tailored. Our objective was to develop a predictive model to estimate the risk of major postoperative complication after primary cytoreductive surgery among elderly ovarian cancer patients. Methods Patients who underwent primary surgery for ovarian cancer between 2005 and 2013 were identified from the National Surgical Quality Improvement Project. Patients were selected using primary procedure CPT codes. Major complications were defined as grade 3 or higher complications on the validated Claviden-Dindo scale. Using logistic regression, we identified demographic and clinical characteristics predictive of postoperative complication. Results We identified 2101 ovarian cancer patients of whom 35.9% were older than 65. Among women older than 65, the rate of major postoperative complication was 16.4%. Complications were directly associated with preoperative laboratory values (serum creatinine, platelets, white blood cell count, hematocrit), ascites, white race, and smoking status, and indirectly associated with albumin. Our predictive model had an area under receiver operating characteristic curve of 0.725. In order to not deny patients necessary surgery, we chose a 50% population rate of postoperative complication which produced model sensitivity of 9.8% and specificity of 98%. Discussion Our predictive model uses easily and routinely obtained objective preoperative factors to estimate the risk of postoperative complication among elderly ovarian cancer patients. This information can be used to assess risk, manage postoperative expectations, and make decisions regarding initial treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)401-406
Number of pages6
JournalGynecologic oncology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015


  • Elderly
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Postoperative complication
  • Risk assessment tool
  • Risk calculator
  • Risk score

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Oncology


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