Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

PURPOSE: Struma ovarii is rare, accounting for 0.3-1% of ovarian tumours. Malignant transformation may occur, most often into papillary thyroid carcinoma. There is a paucity of data pertaining to malignant struma ovarii. This paper shares a decade of experience of a single institution in the management of this rare ovarian cancer, exploring the characteristics of this tumour and suggesting a standardised approach to treatment and follow-up. METHODS: All patients treated for malignant struma ovarii within a large cancer centre over one decade were identified and data collected retrospectively on presentation, diagnosis, management, follow-up and survival outcomes. A literature review was also undertaken. RESULTS: Eleven cases of malignant struma ovarii were managed in the Oxford Cancer Centre between 2010 and 2019, 6 of which were of papillary thyroid carcinoma sub-type. No cases were correctly diagnosed pre-operatively. All patients had stage I disease and were managed surgically-but with variation in radicality. Patients identified as high-risk based on final histopathology underwent additional thyroidectomy and radio-active iodine ablation therapy. One case of synchronous malignancy of the thyroid gland proper was identified. No disease recurrence occurred. CONCLUSION: Malignant struma ovarii present a diagnostic challenge. Multi-disciplinary team (MDT) input is essential. Unilateral salpingo-oophrectomy may be adequate if stage I; reserving more radical surgery for advanced disease. Histopathological risk-stratification should be used to identify those most likely to benefit from adjuvant thyroid-targeting therapies. Patients require follow-up, anticipating an overall good prognosis.

Original publication




Journal article


Arch Gynecol Obstet

Publication Date





863 - 870


Histopathology, Ovarian cancer, Papillary thyroid carcinoma, Radio-active iodine ablation, Struma ovarii, Thyroidectomy, Adult, Aged, Combined Modality Therapy, Female, Humans, Middle Aged, Ovarian Neoplasms, Retrospective Studies, Struma Ovarii, Survival Analysis, Time Factors