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Gynecol Oncol. 2008 Nov;111(2):261-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2008.07.002. Epub 2008 Aug 16.

Surgical and pathologic outcomes of fertility-sparing radical abdominal trachelectomy for FIGO stage IB1 cervical cancer.

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  • 1Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Department of Surgery, Gynecology Service, New York, NY, USA.



To describe the surgical and pathologic findings of fertility-sparing radical abdominal trachelectomy using a standardized surgical technique, and report the rate of post-trachelectomy adjuvant therapy that results in permanent sterility.


A prospectively maintained database of all patients with FIGO stage IB1 cervical cancer admitted to the operating room for planned fertility-sparing radical abdominal trachelectomy was analyzed. Sentinel node mapping was performed via cervical injection of Technetium and blue dye.


Between 6/2005 and 5/2008, 22 consecutive patients with FIGO stage IB1 cervical cancer underwent laparotomy for planned fertility-sparing radical abdominal trachelectomy. Median age was 33 years (range, 23-43). Histology included 13 (59%) with adenocarcinoma and 9 (41%) with squamous carcinoma. Lymph-vascular invasion was seen in 9 (41%) cases. Only 3 (14%) needed immediate completion radical hysterectomy due to intraoperative findings (2 for positive nodes, 1 for positive endocervical margin). Median number of nodes evaluated was 23 (range, 11-44); and 6 (27%) patients had positive pelvic nodes on final pathology - all received postoperative chemoradiation. Sixteen (73%) patients agreed to participate in sentinel node mapping which yielded a detection rate of 100%, sensitivity of 83%, specificity of 100% and false-negative rate of 17%. Eighteen of 19 (95%) patients who completed trachelectomy had a cerclage placed, and 9/22 (41%) patients had no residual cervical carcinoma on final pathology. Median time in the operating room was 298 min (range, 180-425). Median estimated blood loss was 250 ml (range, 50-700), and median hospital stay was 4 days (range, 3-6). No recurrences were noted at the time of this report.


Cervical adenocarcinoma and lymph-vascular invasion are common features of patients selected for radical abdominal trachelectomy. The majority of patients can undergo the operation successfully; however, nearly 32% of all selected cases will require hysterectomy or postoperative chemoradiation for oncologic reasons. Sentinel node mapping is useful but until lower false-negative rates are achieved total lymphadenectomy remains the gold standard. Investigating alternative fertility-sparing adjuvant therapy in node positive patients is needed.

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