Long-Term Toxicity and Quality of Life in Patients Treated for Locally Advanced Cervical Cancer

Piera Gargiulo, Laura Arenare, Carmela Pisano, Sabrina Chiara Cecere, Sara Falivene, Stefano Greggi, Rosa Tambaro, Gaetano Facchini, Giampaolo De Palma, Chiara Della Pepa, Sandro Pignata, Marilena Di Napoli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: The aim of this study was to analyze the long-term toxicity and quality of life (QOL) in patients with locally advanced cervical cancer (LACC) treated with chemoradiation [chemotherapy/radiotherapy (CT/RT)] or neoadjuvant CT (NACT) followed by radical surgery (RS). Methods: Fifty-nine patients with LACC in remission after treatment with NACT + RS (n = 34) or CT/RT (n = 25) were interviewed with an Incontinence Impact Questionnaire (IIQ-7), a Quality of Life Questionnaire (EORTC QLQ-C30), and a Quality of Life Questionnaire for Cervical Cancer (EORTC QLQ-CX24) to compare long-term toxicity and QOL. Results: The mean age was 53 ± 9.8 and 59 ± 11.5 years in the NACT + RS and CT/RT groups, respectively. Overall, diarrhea and constipation were reported in 15 and 68%, respectively, while bladder complaints and a low level of sexual enjoyment were reported in 36 and 47%, respectively. The NACT + RS patients showed a worse sexual activity (74.71 ± 33.57 vs. 92.06 ± 17.96; p = 0.019) and sexual enjoyment (71.21 ± 23.67 vs. 88.88 ± 21.71; p = 0.040) and more frequently complained of constipation (49.01 ± 34.06 vs. 26.66 ± 31.66; p = 0.013), while CT/RT patients more frequently suffered from diarrhea (1.96 ± 7.96 vs. 14.66 ± 28.40; p = 0.017). Conclusions: Many patients treated for LACC have long-term complaints regarding sexual activity and bladder and bowel function. The majority of QOL aspects were similar in the two groups at long-term follow-up. However, diarrhea was more frequent and severe in CT/RT patients, while constipation was more frequent and severe in NACT + RS patients, and they showed a worse sexual life perception. Larger randomized trials addressing these issues are needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-35
Number of pages7
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2016


  • Cervical cancer
  • Chemoradiation
  • Neoadjuvant chemotherapy
  • Quality of life
  • Radical surgery
  • Toxicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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