Sentinel lymph node (SLN) biopsy was associated with fewer surgical complications, less lymphedema, and better quality of life compared with full pelvic lymph node dissection among women with early cervical cancer and negative SLN, according to a study presented at the 48th Annual Meeting of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology.1
Patients with early cervical cancer typically undergo radical hysterectomy with pelvic lymph node dissection, though pelvic lymphadenectomy can result in several complications. Researchers in France compared the morbidity and quality of life of women with early cervical cancer who underwent radical lymphadenectomy with those who did not.
For the prospective, multicenter SENTICOL 2 study (ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01639820), investigators enrolled 206 patients with stage IA to IIA1 epithelial cervical cancer and randomly assigned them 1:1 to undergo complete pelvic lymphadenectomy or SLN biopsy alone. All patients had negative SLN and no patients who had an SLN biopsy alone had a false negative.
Significantly fewer patients who received SLN biopsy alone experienced surgical morbidity compared with those who underwent complete pelvic lymph node dissection (31.4% vs 51.5%; P = .0046).
Patients in the SLN biopsy alone group also experienced significantly less leg heaviness and leg fatigue related to lymphedema and reported better quality of life scores than patients in the control arm.
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The findings support the use of SLN biopsy as a morbidity-sparing approach in place of full pelvic lymph node dissection for the treatment of women with early cervical cancer if the SLN is negative.
- Mathevet P, Lecuru F, Magaud L, Bouttitie F. Sentinel lymph node biopsy for early cervical cancer: Results of a randomized prospective, multicenter study (SENTICOL2) comparing adding pelvic lymph node dissection vs sentinel node biopsy only. Paper presented at: 48th Annual Meeting of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology; March 12-15, 2017; National Harbor, MD.