Risk Factors for Nodal Failure in Patients with FIGO IIIC Cervical Cancer Receiving Definitive Image-Guided Radiotherapy

Curr Oncol. 2023 Dec 8;30(12):10385-10395. doi: 10.3390/curroncol30120756.


Background: Nodal failure is a major failure pattern for patients with FIGO IIIC cervical cancer, which is further associated with worse survival. This study was designed to investigate risk factors for nodal failure in FIGO IIIC cervical cancer patients.

Methods: The characteristics of positive lymph nodes (LNs) and relevant clinical factors of 162 FIGO IIIC cervical cancer patients were collected. The chi-square test and logistic regression model were used to identify risk factors for nodal failure.

Results: In total, 368 positive LNs were identified, including 307 pelvic LNs and 61 para-aortic LNs. The nodal failure rates for all LNs, pelvic LNs, and para-aortic LNs were 9.2%, 7.8%, and 16.4%, respectively. After 20 fractions of RT, a nodal short diameter (D20F) ≥ 0.95 cm and a ratio of nodal shrinkage (ΔV20F) < 0.435 resulted; <4 cycles of chemotherapy indicated higher nodal failure rates for all LNs. For pelvic LNs, ΔV20F < 0.435 and <4 cycles of chemotherapy were associated with a higher incidence of nodal failure. For para-aortic LNs, ΔV20F < 0.435 was the only risk factor for nodal failure.

Conclusions: Para-aortic LNs were more likely to experience nodal failure than pelvic LNs. Nodal shrinkage during radiotherapy and cycles of chemotherapy were associated with nodal failure in patients with FIGO IIIC cervical cancer.

Keywords: cervical cancer; cycles of chemotherapy; definitive radiotherapy; nodal failure; nodal shrinkage.

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lymph Nodes / pathology
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Pelvis
  • Radiotherapy, Image-Guided*
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms* / pathology
  • Uterine Cervical Neoplasms* / radiotherapy