Background Considering the morbidity of radical hysterectomy, the advent of fertility-sparing approaches, and the low risk of parametrial involvement in patients with early stage I cervical tumors, the benefit from parametrial resection is debatable. Objectives of this study were to determine factors predicting parametrial tumor spread and to define a group of patients who might be safely spared parametrial resection.
Methods Pathology review was done on patients with stages IA2 and small IB1, treated by radical hysterectomy and pelvic lymph node dissection. Analysis was performed to determine factors associated with parametrial spread and to define risks of obeying parametrial resection.
Results A total of 223 patients with tumors less than 20 mm in diameter were identified. Parametrial metastases were documented in 8 patients (3.6%); nodes, 1.3%; lymphovascular space invasion (LVSI), 1.8%; contiguous spread, 0.9%. Of 211 (94.6%) patients with negative pelvic nodes, none had parametrial nodal involvement, 0.9% had LVSI, and 0.4% had contiguous spread. Factors associated with parametrial disease were deep cervical invasion, LVSI, tumor volume, and pelvic lymph node metastases (P < 0.01 for each). In patients without tumor LVSI and the depth of invasion was within the inner third, the rate of parametrial spread was 0.45%.
Conclusions Our data show a risk of parametrial spread of 0.45% for tumors less than 20 mm in diameter, no LVSI, and a depth of invasion within the inner third. Patients wanting fertility preservation might be prepared to take this risk of recurrence. Morbidity after nerve-sparing radical hysterectomy is tolerably low, and for patients in whom fertility preservation is not an issue, this should be considered the standard of care.
- Small-diameter cervical cancer
- Parametrial spread
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The authors declare no conflicts of interest.