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Gynecol Oncol. 1991 Jun;41(3):199-205.

Early stage I adenocarcinoma of the uterine cervix: treatment results in patients with tumors less than or equal to 4 cm in diameter.

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Division of Radiotherapy, University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston 77030.


Between 1965 and 1985, 160 patients had initial treatment at the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center for Stage I adenocarcinoma of the uterine cervix less than or equal to 4 cm in diameter. Of these patients, 84 were treated with radiation therapy (RT) alone, 20 were treated with external and intracavitary radiation followed by total hysterectomy (R + S), and 56 were treated with radical hysterectomy (RH). Survival rate was strongly correlated with tumor volume (P = 0.0008), lymphangiogram findings (P = 0.01), and tumor grade (P = 0.0018). Patients with a normal-appearing cervix or a small visible or palpable tumor that did not expand the cervix more than 3 cm had survival and pelvic-control rates of more than 90% after treatment with RH or RT. However, after 5 years, 45% of patients treated with RH for tumors 3-4 cm in diameter had disease recurrence in the pelvis, compared with 11% of patients treated with either RT or R + S (P = 0.025). For patients treated with RH, recurrence was also strongly correlated with findings of lymph/vascular space invasion (P = 0.0004) and poorly differentiated tumor (P = 0.018). Major complication rates were comparable for the three treatment groups. The high rate of pelvic recurrence following treatment with radical hysterectomy alone for patients with tumors greater than 3 cm in diameter, particularly in the presence of lymph/vascular space invasion, poorly differentiated features, and/or positive nodes, should be considered in planning the primary management of patients with Stage I adenocarcinoma of the cervix.

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