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Spread to Brain

Posts: 5
Joined: Jan 2012

Folks, you all need to be aware that ovarian cancer does spread to the brain.  My friend is currently dealing with multiple brain tumors from stage 3 ovarian cancer.  Please ask for regular brain scans as part of your periodic checks as one tumour can be removed, its a different story with multiple seedings.

lovesanimals's picture
Posts: 1364
Joined: Sep 2011

Thank you for taking the time to alert us and for your concern.  I'm so sorry that your friend is dealing with brain tumors on top of ovarian cancer.  There is at least one survivor on this board who has had to deal with mets to the brain.  I haven't seen any postings from her lately (maybe I missed them) but I am hopeful she is doing well.  Sending good thoughts and prayers to your friend.


leesag's picture
Posts: 625
Joined: Jan 2010

Hi Bananaboat,


I had a tumor the size of an egg in my frontal lobe, and three smaller ones too near the brain stem for surgery.  I had brain surgery for the large tumor and then 3 weeks of whole brain radiation.  That was 18 months ago.  Still cancer free!  (Knock Wood and Praise God!)





childofthestars's picture
Posts: 250
Joined: Jan 2011

Hi Leesa

Soo glad to hear that you are doing well.....

Happy and Healthy New Year to you.



leesag's picture
Posts: 625
Joined: Jan 2010




Ok, so on May 31, 2011 my stage 3c cancer graduated to Stage 4 courtesy of Brain Mets. Two weeks ago, MRI showed an empty head and this week CA125 is still well within normal range at 16.  Honestly at this point, my professional life sucks but my personal life is going well, my medical life is going well, and I'm maintaining my equilibrium.The most important part of my life is my family, and making certain that they know how much I love them.  


I'm not giving up.  


"I'm still standing!"



gdpawel's picture
Posts: 538
Joined: May 2001

There are essentially four ways that ovarian cancer metastasis takes place.

1. The first has to do with direct contact with the tumor itself. The tumor invades nearby organs, such as the uterus, bladder, or fallopian tubes.

2. Ovarian cancer can spread by what is known as seeding. This is shedding cancer cells into the abdominal cavity. These cells can then attach to the liver, colon, or stomach and begin to proliferate. This scattering process can make it possible to infect several different key organs.

3. Ovarian cancer metastasis can involve portions of the tumor breaking off and invading the lymphatic system. The collections of cancerous cells are then transported to distant organs, such as the lungs, where new tumors form and grow.

4. Ovarian cancer cells can travel through the bloodstream to other areas of the body, where they develop into various types of cancer.

It has long been believed that it does not metastasize to the brain - however in recent years - women living longer are developing brain mets. One school of thought believes that platinum and taxane drugs maybe weakening the blood brain barrier but that does not explain every instance.

The mechanisms by which primary tumors produce brain metastases is thought to be hematogenous (blood) spread from primary or secondary sites in the lung. Since the brain has no lymphatic system, all tumors metastasizing to the brain do so by spreading through the bloodstream. Arterial blood passes through the lungs before entering the brain, and collects tumor cells filtered out in capillaries, which subsequently embolize to the brain.

An article in Gynecologic Oncology (Volume 92, Issue 3, March 2004, Pages 978-980) by John P. Micha, et al, Gynecologic Oncology Associates, Hoag Memorial Hospital Cancer Center, Newport Beach, CA states that brain metastases resulting from primary ovarian cancer are rare, however, there have been recent studies suggesting an increased incidence of brain metastases (PubMed PMID: 14984970).

Brain metastases commonly develop among patients with ovarian cancer, and do so rapidly in those with advanced disease, a retrospective review found. In a study of 78 women with ovarian cancer who developed one or more brain metastases, 50% developed a single metastasis, according to Sewit Teckie, MD, and colleagues from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York (American Society for Radiation Oncology ASTRO 2011; Teckie S, et al "Predictors of survival in ovarian cancer brain metastases" ASTRO 2011; Abstract 2568). 

debrajo's picture
Posts: 1095
Joined: Sep 2011

Does Uterine(UPSC,ect.) mets spread the same as Ovarian?  Thanks, Debrajo

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