Medline: 1553164

Obstetrics and Gynecology 79(4): 490-497, 1992.

Early stage I carcinoma of the vulva treated with ipsilateral superficial inguinal lymphadenectomy and modified radical hemivulvectomy: a prospective study of the Gynecologic Oncology Group.

Stehman FB, Bundy BN, Dvoretsky PM, et al.


Although cure rates are high, the morbidity of radical operation for carcinoma of the vulva is substantial. Between 1983-1989, member institutions of the Gynecologic Oncology Group entered 155 patients in a prospective evaluation of modified radical hemivulvectomy and ipsilateral inguinal lymphadenecctomy for clinical stage I vulvar cancer. Only patients with neoplastic thickness of 5 mm or less, without vascular space invasion, and negative inguinal lymph nodes were eligible for this study. There have been 19 recurrences and seven deaths from disease among the 121 eligible and evaluable patients. Patients whose disease recurred on the vulva were frequently (eight of ten patients) salvaged by further operation. Five of the seven deaths due to cancer occurred among patients whose first recurrence was in the groin. Acute and long-term morbidity as well as hospital stay were each less than in the Group's previous experience in a comparable patient population treated with radical vulvectomy and bilateral inguinal-femoral lymphadenectomy. There was a significantly increased risk of recurrence but not death when compared with these same historic controls. Modified radical hemivulvectomy and ipsilateral inguinal lymphadenectomy is an alternative to traditional radical operation for these selected patients with stage I carcinoma of the vulva. The number of patients who experienced recurrence in the operated groin is of concern and may be attributable to the decision to leave the femoral nodes intact.

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