A Message to Our Gynecologic Cancer Patients, Advocates, and Community

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently reported a U.S. shortage of several drugs, including cisplatin, carboplatin, and methotrexate. These chemotherapy drugs are used to treat many types of gynecologic cancers, such as those involving the uterus, cervix, ovaries, and fallopian tubes.

The Foundation for Women’s Cancer (FWC), alongside the Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO), stands steadfastly in support of our patients and the gynecologic cancer community. We recognize these drug shortages as a public health crisis with direct effects on patients, clinical outcomes and historically marginalized rural and urban communities.  Addressing this drug shortage is a top priority, and we are working closely with colleagues and fellow advocacy organizations nationally to advocate for patients, minimize harm, and ensure access to equitable treatment.

This work includes discussions with key stakeholders including the FDA, pharmaceutical manufacturers, and collaborating with other oncology medical societies. Additionally, the SGO/FWC is recommending strategies to medical providers to optimize cisplatin, carboplatin, and methotrexate use and acceptable treatment alternatives that may be considered during this shortage. In cases where these drugs must be substituted, other effective treatment options are often available.

The SGO/FWC will continue to advocate for our patients and members until this drug shortage is resolved and to suggest strategies that promote treatment access for all patients with gynecologic cancer. We welcome your insights and/or any questions which may be e-mailed to sgo@sgo.org.