Background: The paucity of long-term oncologic results published in the literature still prevents the scientific community from cementing the place of laparoscopy as the procedure of choice for managing endometrial cancer. We present the outcomes of consecutive patients with endometrial cancer managed laparoscopically with >3-year follow-up. Methods: Data from 117 consecutive women undergoing surgery for treatment of a clinical stage I endometrial cancer and who achieved at least 3-year follow-up were prospectively analyzed. These cases were compared with a historical cohort of 122 consecutive patients with endometrial cancer who had undergone surgery through laparotomy. Results: The laparoscopy and laparotomy groups were similar with regard to baseline patient characteristics, surgical stage, proportion of tumors with unfavorable histology and high grade, as well as patterns of adjuvant therapy. The median (range) follow-up of surviving patients was 52 (36-84) months in the laparoscopic cohort and 80 (36-151) months in the laparotomy cohort. Women who underwent laparoscopy and those who underwent laparotomy had similar 3-year recurrence-free survival rates (91.4% vs. 88.5%, P = 0.52), as well as similar 3-year overall survival rates (94.0% vs. 93.4%, P = 1.0). Multivariate analysis showed that advanced surgical stage, unfavorable histology, and patient age >65 years significantly affect survival, regardless of the surgical approach used. Conclusions: Cancer control in women with endometrial cancer does not appear to be worsened by laparoscopic surgery. In the absence of level I evidence to establish long-term recurrence and survival equivalence, analysis of series as they mature is crucial to fully evaluate disease control afforded by laparoscopy.
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