Surgical Treatment of Early-Stage Cervical Cancer: A Multi-Institution Experience in 2124 Cases in The Netherlands Over a 30-Year Period

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This study aimed to describe the pattern of recurrence and survival related to prognostic variables, including type of surgery as a clinical variable, in patients surgically treated for early cervix cancer.


Records of 2124 patients who underwent a radical hysterectomy for International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics stage I/IIA cervical cancer between 1982 and 2011 were reviewed. Clinical-pathologic prognostic variables, also including extent of parametrectomy, were identified and used in a multivariable Cox proportional hazard model to explore associations between disease-free survival (DFS) and prognostic variables.


The 5-year DFS for the total group was 86%. Large tumor diameter, nonsquamous histology, lymph node metastases, parametrial involvement, lymph vascular space invasion, deep stromal invasion, and less radical surgery were independent poor prognostic variables for survival. Disease-free survival was independently associated with the type of radical hysterectomy with pelvic lymphadenectomy in favor of more radical parametrectomy (hazard ratio, 2.0; 95% confidence interval, 1.6–2.5). This difference was not found in tumors with a diameter of at least 20 mm.


This study confirms that variables such as large tumor diameter, nonsquamous histology, lymph vascular space invasion, deep stromal invasion, positive lymph nodes, and parametrial infiltration are poor prognostic variables in early cervix cancer treated by surgery. The extent of parametrectomy had no influence on survival in tumors of 20 mm or less. For larger tumors, a more radical hysterectomy might be associated with better DFS. Taking into account the possible bias in this study as a result of its retrospective design, ideally a prospective cohort study with clear definition of radicality is necessary to answer this important clinical question.

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