Use of neoadjuvant chemotherapy prior to radical hysterectomy in cervical cancer: Monitoring tumour shrinkage and molecular profile on magnetic resonance and assessment of 3-year outcome
DeSouza NM., Soutter WP., Rustin G., Mahon MM., Jones B., Dina R., McIndoe GA.
The objective of this study is to assess tumour response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy prior to radical hysterectomy in cervical cancer using magnetic resonance (MR) to monitor tumour volume and changes in molecular profile and to compare the survival to that of a control group. Eligibility included Stage Ib-IIb previously untreated cervical tumours > 10 cm3. Neoadjuvant chemotherapy in 22 patients (methotrexate 300 mg m-2 (with folinic acid rescue), bleomycin 30 mg m-2, cisplatin 60 mg m-2) was repeated twice weekly for three courses and followed by radical hysterectomy. Post-operative radiotherapy was given in 14 cases. A total of 23 patients treated either with radical surgery or chemoradiotherapy over the same time period comprised the nonrandomised control group. MR scans before and after neoadjuvant chemotherapy and in the control group documented tumour volume on imaging and metabolites on in vivo spectroscopy. Changes were compared using a paired t-test. Survival was calculated using the Kaplan-Meier method. There were no significant differences between the neoadjuvant chemotherapy and control groups in age (mean, s.d. 43.3 ± 10, 44.7 ± 8.5 years, respectively, P = 0.63) or tumour volume (medians, quartiles 35.8, 17.8, 57.7 cm3 vs 23.0, 15.0, 37.0 cm3, respectively, P = 0.068). The reduction in tumour volume post-chemotherapy (median, quartiles 7.5, 3.0, 19.0 cm3) was significant (P = 0.002). The reduction in -CH2 triglyceride approached significance (P = 0.05), but other metabolites were unchanged. The 3-year survival in the chemotherapy group (49.1%) was not significantly different from the control group (46%, P = 0.94). There is a significant reduction in tumour volume and -CH2 triglyceride levels after neoadjuvant chemotherapy, but there is no survival advantage. © 2004 Cancer Research UK.