Neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio is an independent predictor for survival outcomes in cervical cancer: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Sci Rep. 2020 Dec 14;10(1):21917. doi: 10.1038/s41598-020-79071-x.


This updated meta-analysis sought to explore whether pretreatment neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR) could serve as an independent predictor for survival outcomes in patients with cervical cancer. We searched PubMed, Embase, Web of science and Scopus for studies on the association of pretreatment serum NLR with overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS) among patients with cervical cancer. Included studies with a hazard ratio (HR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) or a p-value were weighted by generic inverse-variance and pooled in a random effects meta-analysis. Subgroup analyses were conducted according to regions, NLR cut-off values and treatments. Publication bias was analyzed by Egger's and Begg's tests. A total of 14 studies comprising 6041 patients were included. The median cut-off value for NLR was 2.46 (range from 1.60 to 3.80). The higher NLR was associated to worse OS (HR 1.86, 95% CI 1.44-2.40) and PFS (HR 1.67, 95% CI 1.25-2.23), compared with lower NLR. This association still exited when analyzed according to regions, NLR cut-off values. Moreover, Significant association between NLR and OS was observed in studies which included patients with early stage disease and receiving radical surgeries. High NLR is independently associated with decreased OS and PFS in patients with cervical cancer. Pretreatment NLR is of independent value to predict the survival outcomes in patients with cervical cancer, regardless of regions and primary treatments.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lymphocyte Count
  • Lymphocytes / metabolism*
  • Lymphocytes / pathology
  • Neutrophils / metabolism*
  • Neutrophils / pathology
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Survival Rate
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / blood*
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / mortality*
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms / pathology