ABOUT THE NOT ON MY WATCH MOVEMENT
Not On My Watch: a Call for Change in Ovarian Cancer Care
Not on My Watch is a movement to empower women with advanced ovarian cancer and their care partners to be proactive in managing their disease. Women should have discussions with their healthcare team early on about options like maintenance therapy and make an informed choice that is right for them.
Thanks to advancements, we’ve come from a time where observation or “watch and wait” was the standard approach between treatments, to having options, like maintenance therapy, for women with advanced ovarian cancer, whether or not they have the BRCA mutation. Maintenance therapy is available early in the course of treatment and may help delay the cancer from coming back.
More than 22,000 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer each year1 — a disease that affects approximately 222,000 women in the US.3 Sadly, ovarian cancer signs and symptoms are hard to recognize, so women are often diagnosed at later stages with advanced disease.4,5 For these women, nearly 85% will see the cancer return in their lifetime2 —known as recurrence — which produces additional anxiety, worry and uncertainty.6
Previously, observation or “watching and waiting,” was the only option for women with advanced ovarian cancer between treatments. Fortunately, women have more choices to help delay a recurrence, whether or not they have the BRCA mutation.7
Maintenance therapy has been shown to help delay recurrence, for women, whether or not they have the BRCA mutation.7
There have been important therapeutic advancements for women, who have advanced ovarian cancer, both at initial treatment and upon recurrence.7
Maintenance therapy is an effective option early on in the course of treatment for women who have responded to platinum-based chemotherapy, regardless of whether they have the BRCA mutation or not.
Studies show that compared to observation or “watch and wait,” the use of maintenance therapy after initial treatment with chemotherapy reduced the risk of disease progression by 28%-70%.8,9*
*Results may vary by maintenance therapy based on certain genetic mutations and patient characteristics, including ability to complete daily tasks and activities, how bad the disease is, and if the patient has other medical conditions.
In 2018, the Not on My Watch movement was created to empower the ovarian cancer community, especially women with advanced ovarian cancer, to take informed and active steps against the threat of another recurrence with options like, maintenance therapy. Previously, the most common approach for these women was “watching and waiting” for the devastating disease to return.
Knowing the important role care partners have in supporting women with advanced ovarian cancer, actor and advocate, Scott Foley, filmed a Public Service Announcement. For the first time, he shared his story of caring for his mother during her multiple recurrences of ovarian cancer. As a care partner, he has a firsthand perspective on the toll this disease can take on women and their loved ones and the feelings of anxiety that may come with the “watch and wait” approach.
1. American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts and Figures 2020. https://www.cancer.org/content/dam/cancer-org/research/cancer-facts-and-statistics/annual-cancer-facts-and-figures/2020/cancer-facts-and-figures-2020.pdf. Accessed March 2021. 2. Lorusso D, Mancini M, Di Rocco R, Fontanelli R, Raspagliesi F. The role of secondary surgery in recurrent ovarian cancer. Int J Surg Oncol. 2012;2012:613980. doi:10.1155/2012/613980. 3. Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program. Cancer Stat Facts: Ovarian Cancer. National Cancer Institute website. https://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/ovary.html. Updated 2020. Accessed March 2021. 4. Schulman-Green D, Bradley EH, Nicholson NR, George E, Indeck A, McCorkle R. One step at a time: self-management and transitions among women with ovarian cancer. Oncol Nurs Forum. 2012;39(4):354-360. 5. Recurrence. Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance (OCRA) website. https://ocrfa.org/patients/about-ovarian-cancer/recurrence/. Accessed March 2021. 6. Ferrell B, Smith SL, Cullinane CA, Melancon C. Psychological well being and quality of life in ovarian cancer survivors. Cancer. 2003;98(5):1061-1071. 7. Khalique S, Hook JM, Ledermann JA. Maintenance therapy in ovarian cancer. Curr Opin Oncol. 2014;26(5):521-528. 8. Tewari S, Burger R, Enserro D, Norquist B, Swisher E, Brady M, et al; Final Overall Survival of a Randomized Trial of Bevacizumab for Primary Treatment of Ovarian Cancer. J of Clinical Oncol, no. 26 (September 10, 2019)2317-2328. 9. Lin Q, Liu W, Xu S, Shang H, Li J, Guo Y, Tong J. PARP inhibitors as maintenance therapy in newly diagnosed advanced ovarian cancer: a meta-analysis. BJOG 2020; https://doi.org/10.1111/1471-0528.16411.