Long-term outcome and prognostic factors for adenocarcinoma/adenosquamous carcinoma of cervix after definitive radiotherapy

Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2011 Jun 1;80(2):429-36. doi: 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2010.02.009. Epub 2010 Jun 9.


Purpose: To study the outcomes of patients with adenocarcinoma/adenosquamous carcinoma (AC/ASC) of the cervix primarily treated with radiotherapy (RT), identify the prognostic factors, and evaluate the efficacy of concurrent chemoradiotherapy (CCRT) or salvage surgery.

Methods and materials: A total of 148 patients with Stage I-IVA AC/ASC of cervix after full-course definitive RT were included. Of the 148 patients, 77% had advanced stage disease. Treatment failure was categorized as either distant or local failure. Local failure was further separated into persistent tumor or local relapse after complete remission. The effectiveness of CCRT with cisplatin and/or paclitaxel was examined, and the surgical salvage rate for local failure was reviewed.

Results: The 5-year relapse-free survival rate was 68%, 38%, 49%, 30%, and 0% for those with Stage IB/IIA nonbulky, IB/IIA bulky, IIB, III, and IVA disease, respectively, and appeared inferior to that of those with squamous cell carcinoma of the cervix treated using the same RT protocol. Incomplete tumor regression after RT, a low hemoglobin level, and positive lymph node metastasis were independent poor prognostic factors for relapse-free survival. CCRT with weekly cisplatinum did not improve the outcome for our AC/ASC patients. Salvage surgery rescued 30% of patients with persistent disease.

Conclusion: Patients with AC/ASC of the cervix primarily treated with RT had inferior outcomes compared to those with squamous cell carcinoma. Incomplete tumor regression after RT was the most important prognostic factor for local failure. Salvage surgery for patients with persistent tumor should be encouraged for selected patients. Our results did not demonstrate a benefit of CCRT with cisplatin for this disease.

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / drug therapy
  • Adenocarcinoma / mortality
  • Adenocarcinoma / pathology
  • Adenocarcinoma / radiotherapy*
  • Adenocarcinoma / secondary
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use
  • Carcinoma, Adenosquamous / drug therapy
  • Carcinoma, Adenosquamous / mortality
  • Carcinoma, Adenosquamous / pathology
  • Carcinoma, Adenosquamous / radiotherapy*
  • Carcinoma, Adenosquamous / secondary
  • Cisplatin / administration & dosage
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / mortality
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / pathology
  • Paclitaxel / administration & dosage
  • Prognosis
  • Radiation-Sensitizing Agents / therapeutic use
  • Salvage Therapy / methods
  • Survival Rate
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / mortality
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / pathology
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / radiotherapy*


  • Radiation-Sensitizing Agents
  • Paclitaxel
  • Cisplatin