What is the optimal intravenous (IV) chemotherapy regimen for advanced ovarian cancer following surgery?

Carboplatin is a drug used to treat cancer cells by disrupting cell growth of cancer cells.

It is the best drug for treatment of ovarian cancer, both when used on its own or in combination with other drugs.

Carboplatin is most commonly used together with paclitaxel and given through injection into the veins every 3 weeks. This is normally repeated for 6 cycles. Paclitaxel belongs to the taxane family of drugs that inhibit cancer growth.

In patients who cannot tolerate paclitaxel due to adverse side effects experienced, either pegylated liposomal doxorubicin, or gemcitabine in combination with carboplatin can be used instead. Doxorubicin is a drug that inhibits growth of cancer by binding to an enzyme required for cancer cell growth while gemcitabine is a drug that inhibits cancer cell growth and promotes cancer cell death.

In patients who are unfit for chemotherapy involving multiple drug combinations, carboplatin should be given on its own. A third drug should not be added to the regimen.

Dose-dense chemotherapy may be used for first-line treatment of ovarian cancer. It is a type of chemotherapy that aims to achieve maximum tumour kill by increasing the rate of chemotherapy delivery. Your doctor will need to discuss the increased toxicity and frequency of visits with you.