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Eur J Gynaecol Oncol. 2005;26(3):279-84.

Color Doppler assessment of blood flow in endometrial cancer.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Medical University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland.



To determine the location and intensity of angiogenesis as well as selected flow parameters by transvaginal color Doppler (TVCD) and to evaluate the relation of myometrial invasion, histological grading, lymph nodes, and omental and adnexal metastasis on blood flow characteristics in endometrial cancer.


Transvaginal colour Doppler and pulsed Doppler ultrasound were performed on 90 women with endometrial cancer. The degree of invasion as well as adnexal, omental, and pelvic lymph node metastasis was evaluated. Location of the blood vessels (peripheral, central, mixed) and vascular density as well as selected Doppler blood flow indices: PSV, RI of neoplastic infiltration was assessed.


The median age of the 90 women was 63.3 +/- 12.3 years (range 32 to 86 years); of these 92.2% were postmenopausal. Cancer concerned only the endometrium (E), with superficial (S) and deep infiltration (D) established in 14.4%, 45.6% and 40%, respectively. The histological maturity was as follows: G1 - 17.6%, G2 - 66.7%, G3 - 16.6% of cases. Adnexal, omental and lymph node metastasis was found in 12.2%, 3.3% and 16.6%, respectively. Abnormal low impedance and high velocity flow (mean RI 0.38 +/- 0.09, PSV 20.45 +/- 9.6 cm/sec) were found in 88.9% of cases. In types E, S, D in 61.5%, 92.7% and 94.4%, respectively (p = 0.003). Differences in RI and PSV between groups with high and low vascular density were statistically significant (p = 0.005 and 0.001, respectively). In all cases peripheral and mixed vascularity were found more frequently (p < 0.05). A positive significant correlation between vascular density increase and surgicopathological stage of cancer was found more frequently (p < 0.005). There were significant differences in vascular density, Doppler blood flow indices and vascular location in each type of histological malignancy (p < 0.05). No significant differences in each flow parameter in hematogenous-adnexal/omental metastatic and non metastatic cases were found, whereas pelvic lymph node involvement and vascular density were shown to be statistically significant (p < 0.02). There were significant differences in vascular density in lymph-node positive cases whereas the remaining flow parameters did not differ.


These results suggest that TVCD evaluation of endometrial cancer is a reliable method for assessing endometrial angiogenesis. Our results indicate that blood flow rates correspond with increased angiogenesis in endometrial cancers, and might potentially be used as a good prediction factor for tumor progression and metastasis in affected women. Preoperative ultrasound examination should be seen as an important tool in the establishment of individualized treatment programs for women with endometrial cancer.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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