Objective: Standard surgical treatment of advanced-stage ovarian carcinoma with electrosurgery cannot always result in complete cytoreductive surgery (CRS), especially when many small metastases are found on the mesentery and intestinal surface. We investigated whether adjuvant use of a neutral argon plasma device can help increase the complete cytoreduction rate. Patients and Methods: 327 patients with FIGO stage IIIB–IV epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) who underwent primary or interval CRS were randomized to either surgery with neutral argon plasma (PlasmaJet) (intervention) or without PlasmaJet (control group). The primary outcome was the percentage of complete CRS. The secondary outcomes were duration of surgery, blood loss, number of bowel resections and colostomies, hospitalization, 30-day morbidity, and quality of life (QoL). Results: Complete CRS was achieved in 119 patients (75.8%) in the intervention group and 115 patients (67.6%) in the control group (risk difference (RD) 8.2%, 95% confidence interval (CI) –0.021 to 0.181; P = 0.131). In a per-protocol analysis excluding patients with unresectable disease, complete CRS was obtained in 85.6% in the intervention group and 71.5% in the control group (RD 14.1%, 95% CI 0.042 to 0.235; P = 0.005). Patient-reported QoL at 6 months after surgery differed between groups in favor of PlasmaJet surgery (95% CI 0.455–8.350; P = 0.029). Other secondary outcomes did not differ significantly. Conclusions: Adjuvant use of PlasmaJet during CRS for advanced-stage ovarian cancer resulted in a significantly higher proportion of complete CRS in patients with resectable disease and higher QoL at 6 months after surgery. (Funded by ZonMw, Trial Register NL62035.078.17.) Trial Registration: Approved by the Medical Ethics Review Board of the Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam, the Netherlands, NL62035.078.17 on 20-11-2017. Recruitment started on 30-1-2018.
The study was funded by the Netherlands Organization for Health Research and Development (ZonMw), number 843001805. PlasmaSurgical and Medical Dynamics provide an in-kind subsidy: the loan and maintenance of the PlasmaJet systems during this research. Neither company was involved in the study design, the collection, analysis, or interpretation of data, nor the writing of this manuscript or the decision to submit this manuscript for publication.
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