Adnexal tumors are growths that form on the organs and connective tissues around the uterus in women. Adnexal tumors are most often noncancerous (benign), but they can be cancerous (malignant).Adnexal tumors occur in the Ovaries, Fallopian tubes, Connective tissue around the ovaries or fallopian tubes. Diagnosis of adnexal tumors involves a careful physical exam, imaging tests and, sometimes, surgery. Treatment for adnexal tumors depends on the specific location and types of cells involved.
The pathophysiology is not well understood for most adnexal masses; however, some theories have been proposed. Functional cysts may be the result of variation in normal follicle formation. Mature cystic teratoma may be the result of abnormal germ cell proliferation. Endometriomas are thought to result from retrograde menstruation or coelomic metaplasia. The exact cause of epithelial neoplasms is unknown, but recent studies have suggested a complex series of molecular genetic changes is involved.
Worldwide, the estimated annual incidence of ovarian cancer is 204,000 with 125,000 deaths.In developed countries, ovarian cancer remains the most lethal of all gynecologic malignancies.One of the reasons for the high fatality rate is that more than 70% of women with ovarian cancer are diagnosed with advanced disease. Five-year survival rates for women with advanced disease range from 20% to 30%; however, for women who are diagnosed when the disease is confined to the ovary, cure rates are approximately 70% to 90%.3 Because there is a close correlation between stage at presentation and survival, early detection of ovarian cancer represents the best hope for mortality reduction and long-term disease control.