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Int J Gynecol Cancer. 1999 May;9(3):198-205.

The prognostic significance of p53, mdm2, c-erbB-2, cathepsin D, and thrombocytosis in stage IB cervical cancer treated by primary radical hysterectomy.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa; Center for Epidemiological Research in Southern Africa, Pretoria, South Africa; Department of Pathology, The Norwegian Radium Hospital, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.


The objective of this study was to evaluate the value of platelet count, p53, MDM2, c-erbB-2, and cathepsin D immunoreactivity as predictors of lymph node metastasis (LNM) as well as their prognostic significance in patients with stage IB cervical cancer treated by radical hysterectomy between 1991 through 1995. We also report on the outcome of a protocol considering lymph-vascular space invasion (LVSI) in addition to LNM as a strong motivation for adjuvant radiotherapy. A total of 93 patients were the subject of this retrospective study. The incidence of positive nodes was high (30.1%). Thrombocytosis (>/= 400.000/mm3) was present in 6.7% of patients. Positive immunostaining was found for p53 (50.6%), MDM2 (21.7%), c-erbB-2 (14.5%), and cathepsin D (45.8%), but none of them was able to predict LNM. Only thrombocytosis was associated with an unfavorable prognosis: a statistically significant association was shown with relapse-free and overall survival in an univariate analysis (P = 0.0431 and P = 0.0012, respectively) with a tendency to significance in multivariate analysis (P = 0.079 and P = 0.0882, respectively). We postulate that thrombocytosis in early stage cervical cancer could be a marker for subclinical tumor burden. LVSI, regarded as an indication for adjuvant radiotherapy, was no longer associated with poor relapse-free or overall survival, but resulted in a 41% postoperative irradiation rate. Further research is needed to establish the value of LVSI in postoperative radiotherapy decision making.


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