692998 tn?1257150368

Is a borderline tumor considered cancer?

3 years ago I had a borderline ovarian tumor roughly the size of a cantelope removed along with my right ovary.

My question is... is that considered cancer? It was staged T1a,
6 Responses
Avatar universal
Hi there

I also had a 16cm borderline ovarian mucinous tumour removed , in 2010. When I asked my consultant , a few months later , this question she looked at me as if I was crazy , and said "no, you didn't have an invasive cancer". I have since looked into this and many of the medical guidelines on OC also cover borderline tumours. Therefore I consider that I had a form of ovarian cancer , but that it was found whilst it was still non-invasive.

Take care !
1242509 tn?1279120864
Borderline ovarian serous/mucinous tumors, depending on what the pathology report says will depend on the course of treatment. Removal of the mass and staging is done just as if they would do for any of the ovarian cancers. You should find out if they did a cell mitotic rate index on the path report. A high mitotic rate can mean a more agressive form of ovarian cancer. "he said it is not cancer", there is a missconception that borderline tumors and a few other ovarian tumors are not ovarian cancer which is false. They are a very   slow growing form of ovarian cancer. You WILL read that some Dr's will still say that these forms of tumors are not cancer, but from what I understand it depends on the type of pathology.
There seems to be a corelation to the type of surgery performed and long term outcome. If a pt was older and had both ovaries and uterous removed and all biopsies of lymph nodes are neg then there is a goood chance it will never return. Some younger women who don't want to have everything removed sometimes end up with some issue down the line But discuss this at length this with your GYN/Oncologist.
But I also believe these cancers have a high rate of long term survival.
You should get copies of all reports and discuss in depth with your GYN/Oncologist> It is imperative that you are being treated by a GYN/Oncologist as studies have shown a much better long term survival when you are treated by the specialist> What did the cytology of the perionieal cavity show? Ask your gyn if they removed the cyst/mass intact???
You have found a great site with some very knowlegable people on it. Post with any other questions you may have.
I wish you al the best
692998 tn?1257150368
Thank you both. I just feel like I can't really say I've had cancer because I didn't have chemo or radiation. But I did have major surgery and am still dealing with the ramifications of this tumor today... latest ultrasound shows the same thing may be on my left ovary, but not as big yet. I have a follow up ultrasound in a couple weeks. But I may get a second opinion from a GynONC in Denver. I live in rural Wyoming and while my doctor here is wonderful, she and the radiologist I'm sure as well, just don't have the experience with this stuff that a gyn onc would. As I only have one ovary left and do not have children and have always wanted to have children someday when I am ready (I am only 25, not anywhere close to married and still in school) and cannot afford egg preservation, I want to hang on to this ovary as long as possible.

So I guess I can say I had ovarian cancer and now it may be recurring... lovely. :(
Avatar universal
If it is recurring I would be suspicious of the type of ovarian cancer you originally had.  You really should have your first tumor slide examined by a specialist in borderline ovarian cancer to confirm that is what you had.  Especially since you seem to have another problem on the other ovary.  It would be unusual for borderline cancer to return so quickly.
That being said - it is possible that the "tumor" on this ultrasound could be nothing.  I also had serous borderline ovarian cancer stage 1a.  By the time I had my first surgery (I had to wait over 2 mos from the time of diagnosis for my ophrectomy) I insisted on a second ultrasound just prior to my surgery and although they didn't tell me until after surgery in addition to the large complex cyst I had on the left side I had developed 2 more complex cysts on the right side!  I was so very lucky that the ones on the right side turned out to be chocolate cysts.  I was 32 at the time of original diagnosis (with no children) and on the advice of the doctors opted for a hysterectomy a year and a half later.  I'm 42 now and haven't had any problems so far.  
Good luck to you - I hope the ultrasound shows it has dissolved and was nothing.  
Take care and let us know you're doing.
Avatar universal
Hi there

I am so sorry about your situation , you are so young to be facing all of this. I am much older than you , late 40s , but none of my friends have gone through anything similar . It must be much worse for somebody so young.

I totally agree with the answers / comments the other ladies have given.I would also definitely get the slides re checked. Many early invasive cancers do not require chemo or radiotherapy and as you say it was indeed major surgery. My understanding is that even if a borderline tumour recurs , it recurs as borderline in most cases and surgery takes care of it.

I had two major ops , and now one year after the second one I feel so much better. I went back to work on reduced hours 6 weeks after the second operation. It's my 50th birthday in October and my husband and I have booked a 3 week scuba diving trip to Indonesia to celebrate. Even 6 months ago I felt okayish , but I really feel great now.

So will you sweetie, take care and make sure you get lkots of TLC from all around you. Please do let us all know how it goes.

Charlie xxx
725998 tn?1258048708
I had borderline cancer (serous) about 2 1/2 years ago, staged 1C.  I was told that it really wasn't cancer, even though my hospital bill said "removal of malignant tumor."  LOL.

I also didn't have chemo (which isn't effective with most borderlines anyway) or radiation.  I am monitored and take a CA125 test every 6 months.

When I tried to get into the bone marrow donor registry, I was told that I couldn't because I had cancer.  So, whether or not it's considered cancer depends on who you ask and why you need to know.

Borderlines have a very good prognosis.  It's funny how we refer to them as fruits.  Yours was a cantaloupe.  Mine was a grapefruit!
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