Accuracy of intraoperative frozen section in the diagnosis of ovarian tumors


: Dr Fariba Yarandi, Department of Gynecological Oncology, Mirza-Koochak-Khan Hospital, Nejatollahi St., Karim Khan Zand Avenue, Tehran, Iran. Email:


Background:  Ovarian neoplasms are an important cause of morbidity and mortality in women. The surgical management of ovarian neoplasms depends on their correct categorisation as benign, borderline and malignant.

Aim:  The aim of this study was to determine the clinical benefits of intraoperative frozen section analysis into the surgical management policy of women referred with an adnexal mass suspicious of ovarian cancer.

Methods:  A retrospective study of 106 ovarian frozen section results was examined to determine the accuracy of frozen section diagnosis. The accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive value of frozen section were studied.

Results:  The overall accuracy to determine the status of malignancy was 93.3%. Sensitivity of the test was highest in the benign groups at 97.4% and lowest in the borderline groups at 25%. The accuracy of frozen section was 80% in serous tumours and 60% in mucinous. There were two (2.5%) false positive, three (10.7%) false negative and two overestimated diagnosis in frozen section examination. Eight malignancies (30.7%) were of metastatic origin, all of which (100%), were correctly identified on frozen section.

Conclusion:  Frozen section appears to be an accurate technique for the histopathological diagnosis of ovarian tumours. Some limitations were observed among borderline and mucinous tumours. This emphasises the great value of frozen section in the diagnosis of ovarian tumours.