More Accurate Definition of Clinical Target Volume Based on the Measurement of Microscopic Extensions of the Primary Tumor Toward the Uterus Body in International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics Ib-IIa Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Cervix

Published:November 05, 2014DOI:


      To more accurately define clinical target volume for cervical cancer radiation treatment planning by evaluating tumor microscopic extension toward the uterus body (METU) in International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics stage Ib-IIa squamous cell carcinoma of the cervix (SCCC).

      Patients and Methods

      In this multicenter study, surgical resection specimens from 318 cases of stage Ib-IIa SCCC that underwent radical hysterectomy were included. Patients who had undergone preoperative chemotherapy, radiation, or both were excluded from this study. Microscopic extension of primary tumor toward the uterus body was measured. The association between other pathologic factors and METU was analyzed.


      Microscopic extension toward the uterus body was not common, with only 12.3% of patients (39 of 318) demonstrating METU. The mean (±SD) distance of METU was 0.32 ± 1.079 mm (range, 0-10 mm). Lymphovascular space invasion was associated with METU distance and occurrence rate. A margin of 5 mm added to gross tumor would adequately cover 99.4% and 99% of the METU in the whole group and in patients with lymphovascular space invasion, respectively.


      According to our analysis of 318 SCCC specimens for METU, using a 5-mm gross tumor volume to clinical target volume margin in the direction of the uterus should be adequate for International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics stage Ib-IIa SCCC. Considering the discrepancy between imaging and pathologic methods in determining gross tumor volume extent, we recommend a safer 10-mm margin in the uterine direction as the standard for clinical practice when using MRI for contouring tumor volume.
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