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Oophorectomy if no personal history of breast cancer

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

Authoring team

Risk-reducing oophorectomy for women with no personal history of breast cancer

  • risk-reducing bilateral oophorectomy is appropriate only for a small proportion of women who are from high-risk families and should be managed by a multidisciplinary team
  • women considering risk-reducing bilateral oophorectomy should be informed of possible psychosocial and sexual consequences of the procedure and have the opportunity to discuss these issues
  • women not at high risk who raise the possibility of risk-reducing bilateral oophorectomy should be offered appropriate information, and if seriously considering this option should be offered referral to the team that deals with women at high risk
  • women undergoing bilateral risk-reducing oophorectomy should have their fallopian tubes removed as well

Breast cancer risk category

Near population risk

Moderate risk

High Risk *

Lifetime risk from age 20

Less than 17%

Greater than 17% but less than 30%

30% or greater

Risk between ages 40 and 50

Less than 3%


Greater than 8%

*This group includes known BRCA1, BRCA2 and TP53 mutations and rare conditions that carry an increased risk of breast cancer such as Peutz-Jegher syndrome (STK11), Cowden (PTEN) and familial diffuse gastric cancer (E-Cadherin)


  • HRT for women with no personal history of breast cancer who have a bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy before the natural menopause
    • when women with no personal history of breast cancer have either a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation or a family history of breast cancer and they have had a bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy before their natural menopause, offer them:
      • combined HRT if they have a uterus
      • oestrogen-only HRT if they don't have a uterus
      • up until the time they would have expected natural menopause (average age for natural menopause is 51-52 years)
    • manage menopausal symptoms occurring when HRT is stopped in the same way as symptoms of natural menopause


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