The role of the lymphadenectomy in ovarian carcinoma is widely discussed. The natural history of disease, its tendency to spread to peritoneal cavity and the lack of any reported series of careful node dissections undertaken during surgical exploration has made it difficult to establish the real significance of nodal metastatization and the optimal therapeutic approach for patients with positive nodes. At the Istituto Nazionale Tumori, Milan, 341 patients with ovarian carcinoma have been subjected to lymph node dissection. In 253 cases in which lymphadenectomy has been carried out during first surgery, the lymphonodal diffusion has been evaluated by stage, grading and histology. The incidence of lymphonodal metastases increased with the diffusion of the primitive tumour and this is particularly evident for the serous adenocarcinoma. From our data (as shown in our series of 173 cases Stage III with peritoneal and retroperitoneal diffusion) the lymphonodal involvement has to be considered as a negative prognostic factor, influencing survival in a statistically significant way. In the 88 patients subjected to radical lymphadenectomy during second-look surgery, after chemotherapy, a smaller percentage of positive nodes was observed as compared to untreated cases but, on the other hand, we documented a portion of positive nodes not sterilized by sistemic therapy. All this data confirm the necessity to perform radical lymphadenectomy not only as a staging procedure (because of low sensitivity of lymphangiography) but also as a therapeutic one for some patients.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Obstetrics and Gynaecology