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Flow cytometric DNA measurements in squamous cell carcinoma of the vulva: an important prognostic method
  1. J. Kaern,
  2. T. Iversen,
  3. C. TropÉ,
  4. E. O. Pettersen* and
  5. J. M. Nesland
  1. * Departments of Gynecologic Oncology, Tissue culture and
  2. Pathology, The Norwegian Radium Hospital, Montebello, 0310 Oslo 3, Norway
  1. Address for correspondence: Dr J. Kaern, Department of Gynecologic Oncology, The Norwegian Radium Hospital, Montebello, 0310 Oslo 3, Norway.


One hundred and thirty-one squamous cell carcinomas of the vulva were examined by FCM-DNA measurements. Samples were prepared from paraffin-embedded tissue. Of these, 66 were found to be diploid, 52 aneuploid and 13 could not be evaluated. The 5-year crude survival rate was 62% for the diploid and 23% for the aneuploid tumors (P < 0.001). The aneuploid tumors without lymph node (LN) metastases showed a 5-year cancer-related survival rate of 44% as compared to 58% for the diploid tumors with LN metastases. In a multivariate Cox regression analysis the most important independent prognostic parameters were (1) LN involvement (P < 0.0001), (2) tumor ploidy (P = 0.0001) and (3) tumor size (P = 0.0039). By using ploidy and lymph node involvement in this way as prognostic factors we are able to identify high- and low-risk groups of patients. We strongly believe that these results should lead to a different attitude towards therapy in vulva cancer patients.

  • DNA ploidy
  • flow cytometry
  • prognostic factors
  • squamous cell carcinoma
  • vulva.

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