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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Sentinel node biopsy is reliable in early-stage cervical cancer but not in locally advanced disease.

BACKGROUND: Sentinel lymph node (SN) biopsy based on dual labeling with blue dye and radiocolloid can reliably determine lymph node status in early-stage cervical cancer, but few data are available on its accuracy in more advanced disease. We examined the influence of tumor stage on the accuracy of SN biopsy in patients with cervical cancer. METHODS: Between July 2001 and June 2004, 33 patients (mean age 52 years) with early-stage or locally advanced cervical cancer underwent laparoscopic SN biopsy based on dual labeling with patent blue and radiocolloid. Patients with early-stage cervical cancer (stages IA and IB1, 23 patients) underwent complete laparoscopic pelvic lymphadenectomy after the SN procedure. Patients with locally advanced cervical cancer (stage IB2, IIA or IIB, 10 patients) underwent laparoscopic pelvic and para-aortic lymphadenectomy after SN biopsy and prior neoadjuvant concomitant chemoradiotherapy. The SN identification rates and false-negative rates of patients with early-stage and locally advanced disease were compared. RESULTS: The mean numbers of SNs identified per patient with early-stage and locally advanced cervical cancer were 2.3 (range 0-4) and 1.9 (range 0-4), respectively. SNs were identified in 86.9% (20/23) of patients with early-stage disease and in 80% (8/10) of patients with locally advanced disease. When analyzed according to the side of dissection, the identification rate was lower, especially in the patients with locally advanced disease (55% compared with 67.4%). The false-negative rate per patient was zero in early-stage disease and 20% (1/5) in locally advanced disease (no significant difference). When the side of dissection was taken into account, the false-negative rate improved to 42.9% (3/7) in patients with locally advanced disease and remained at zero in early-stage disease (P=0.038). Isolated blue dye was taken up in 53.3% of SNs in patients with locally advanced disease, compared with only 6.4% in patients with early-stage disease. CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests that the SN biopsy technique with dual labeling is less accurate in locally advanced cervical cancer than in early-stage cervical cancer.[1]


  1. Sentinel node biopsy is reliable in early-stage cervical cancer but not in locally advanced disease. Barranger, E., Coutant, C., Cortez, A., Uzan, S., Darai, E. Ann. Oncol. (2005) [Pubmed]
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