Objective The circumflex iliac nodes distal to the external iliac nodes are frequently removed when bilateral pelvic lymphadenectomy is performed in patients with cervical cancer. The objective of this systematic review was to assess the incidence of metastasis in the circumflex iliac nodes in patients with cervical cancer.
Methods PubMed/Medline, ClinicalTrials, Embase, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Scopus, and Ovid databases were searched from inception to May 2021. We included articles published in English language reporting all types of studies, except for case reports and commentaries. Abstracts and unpublished studies were excluded. The inclusion criteria were diagnosis of cervical cancer, FIGO 2009 stages IA–IIB, squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma or adenosquamous carcinoma, and primary surgery including pelvic lymph node dissection.
Results A total of 3037 articles were identified. Overall, 1165 eligible patients from four studies were included in the analysis. A total of 696 (59.7%) patients had early-stage disease (FIGO 2009 stages IA, IB1, IIA1). The median number of extracted circumflex iliac nodes, which was reported in two studies, was one (range not reported) and three (range 1–13). The positive lymph node rate for the entire population and circumflex iliac node involvement were 26.9% and 3.1%, respectively. Isolated metastases were reported for 904 patients (three studies) and in one patient nodal spread was detected (0.11%).
Conclusion The rate of isolated metastases in circumflex iliac nodes is small and excision of these lymph nodes as part of routine lymphadenectomy should be avoided.
- cervical cancer
- lymph nodes
Data availability statement
All data relevant to the study are included in the article or uploaded as supplementary information.
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Contributors DV-C: conceptualization, investigation, methodology, writing - original draft, writing - review, and editing. JR: data curation, formal analysis, investigation, methodology, writing - review, and editing. RP: conceptualization, methodology, formal analysis, writing - review and editing, supervision.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
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