Does the type of surgery for early-stage endometrial cancer affect the rate of reported lymphovascular space invasion in final pathology specimens?

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Abstract

Objective

Laparoscopically assisted vaginal hysterectomy (LAVH), which usually involves the use of an intrauterine manipulator for optimal surgical control, has been shown to be as effective and safe as conventional total abdominal hysterectomy (TAH) for the staging of endometrial carcinoma. The purpose of this study was to determine whether the use of an intrauterine manipulator was associated with an increase in the pathologic reporting of lymphovascular space invasion (LVSI), which is an important determinant in choosing adjuvant therapy. We hypothesized that intracavitary manipulation and an increase of the intrauterine pressure could cause pseudolymphovascular invasion.

Study Design

We performed a retrospective chart review of endometrial cancer patients treated at our institution from January 1996 through January 2006. Records were reviewed for patient's age, preoperative diagnosis, procedure type, final surgical staging, and final pathology report. Using the 2009 International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics staging, we included all patients having stage IA or IB endometrioid-type endometrial cancer who had undergone either a TAH or LAVH with or without pelvic and paraaortic lymph node dissection. The χ2 and Fisher exact tests were used to measure the association between risk of positive lymphovascular invasion and surgical groups.

Results

Of 568 women identified as having endometrioid-type endometrial cancer, 486 (85.6%) met criteria for stage IA-IB endometrioid histology, grade 1, 2, or 3. LVSI was reported in 553/568 cases, with LVSI positivity in 16.9% (n = 96/568). The mean ages of the LAVH and TAH groups were significantly different (59.4 vs 62.4 years, respectively, P = .0050). Also, mean estimated blood loss and uterine weight significantly varied between TAH and LAVH groups (P = .0001 and .008, respectively). For stage IA, 17/220 (7.7%) who had been treated with LAVH had positive LVSI compared with 20/199 (10.1%) of patients receiving TAH (P = .73). For stage IB, 11/25 (44.0%) of patients treated with LAVH had positive LVSI compared with 10/31 (32.3%) of patients receiving TAH (P = .53). The stage I cancer patients were further subdivided into histological grades 1, 2, and 3, and LVSI was not significantly different between TAH and LAVH groups per grade of cancer. We found no differences between TAH and LAVH in early-stage endometrial cancer (stage IA and IB), with respect to the presence of positive peritoneal washings.

Conclusion

In early-stage endometrial cancer (stage IA and IB), there were no differences between TAH and LAVH in the final pathologic report of LVSI. The use of an intrauterine manipulator for LAVH was not associated with an increased detection of LVSI.

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