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Rev Assoc Med Bras (1992). 2005 Jul-Aug;51(4):228-32. Epub 2005 Aug 24.

[Clinically undetectable lymph node invasion in vulvar cancer].

[Article in Portuguese]

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Departamento de Tocoginecologia, Faculdade de Ciências Médicas, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, Rua Alexander Fleming 848, Nova Campinas, Campinas, CEP 13092-340 São Paulo, Brazil.



To assess the neoplastic invasion of superficial and deep inguinal lymph nodes of women with invasive vulvar squamous carcinoma smaller than 5 centimeters with a clinically normal inguinal region.


the medical records of 59 women cared at the State University of Campinas with invasive vulvar squamous carcinoma T1 and T2 and who presented clinically normal inguinal regions (N0) were reviewed. Clinical characteristics of both tumor and patients were evaluated as well as the follow-up data. Odds ratios and Fisher's Exact Test were used to assess the correlations between the invasion of inguinal lymph nodes and tumor size, grade, relapses and clinical complications. Confidence limits of 95% were used.


Age of the patients ranged from 34 to 91 years (mean 67 years), and follow-up time ranged from 3 days (peri-operatory death) to 252 months (mean 27 months). Clinically, 22 (37%) women had lesions T1 lesions and 37 (63%) T2. Histological analysis showed unilateral lymphatic invasion in six (10%) women and bilateral in three (5%). There was no significant association between tumor size and lymph node invasion. Also, pathologic tumor size and grade were not associated with lymph node neoplastic involvement. Relapses and late complications were not correlated with lymph node neoplastic invasion.


Superficial and deep inguinal dissection disclosed clinically undetectable lymph node neoplastic invasion, although tumor size and histological grade, relapses and late complications were not associated with node involvement.

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