Impact of hemoglobin levels before and during concurrent chemoradiotherapy on the response of treatment in patients with cervical carcinoma: preliminary results

Cancer. 2001 Aug 15;92(4):903-8. doi: 10.1002/1097-0142(20010815)92:4<903::aid-cncr1399>;2-2.


Background: In patients undergoing radiation for cervical carcinoma, there is evidence that anemia is associated with an impaired outcome. For patients undergoing chemoradiation, there are no data available. The objective of this retrospective study was to examine the impact of anemia before and during chemoradiation in patients with cervical carcinoma.

Methods: The authors collected data on hemoglobin (Hb) levels before and during treatment from 57 patients with cervical carcinoma. The stage of disease ranged between Stage IB and Stage IVA. All patients were treated with concurrent chemoradiation. Response to chemoradiation was evaluated by univariate and multivariate analyses.

Results: The mean Hb level at the time of presentation was 12.9 +/- 1.6 g/dL in patients with a complete clinical response (CCR) and 12.1 +/- 1.4 g/dL in those with persistent disease (P = 0.126). In patients with a CCR, the mean nadir Hb level was 11.1 +/- 1.3 g/dL, and in patients with treatment failure, it was 9.8 +/- 1.8 g/dL (P = 0.008). A univariate logistic regression model demonstrated that the nadir Hb level was the most predictive factor for treatment failure (relative risk, 1.92; P = 0.015) followed by disease stage (relative risk, 0.51; P = 0.074). In a multivariate model, the nadir Hb level remained the only prognostically relevant factor predicting the response to chemoradiation. Only patients with nadir Hb values > 11 g/dL throughout chemoradiation had a more than 90% chance of achieving a CCR.

Conclusions: In patients undergoing chemoradiation for cervical carcinoma, the nadir Hb level is highly predictive of response to treatment, whereas the Hb level at the time of presentation is prognostically not significant.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anemia / complications
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Female
  • Hemoglobins / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Prognosis
  • Radiotherapy Dosage
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms* / blood
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms* / complications
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms* / drug therapy
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms* / radiotherapy


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Hemoglobins