PURPOSE - Uterine papillary serous carcinoma (UPSC) is an aggressive variant of endometrial carcinoma. The majority of patients with clinical Stage I UPSC are found to have extrauterine disease at the time of surgery. Most authors report survival rates of 35-50% for Stage I-II and 0-15% for Stage III and IV UPSC. Surgical treatment as the sole therapy for patients with Stage I-IV UPSC is unacceptable because of high recurrence rates. Chemotherapy, radiotherapy, or both have been added after surgery in an attempt to improve survival. However, the survival benefit to patients from such multimodality therapy remains uncertain. This study analyzes the patterns of failure in patients with FIGO Stages I-IV UPSC treated by multimodality therapy.
METHODS AND MATERIALS - Forty-two women with FIGO Stages I-IV UPSC who were treated by multimodality therapy were analyzed retrospectively between 1988 and 1998. Data were obtained from tumor registry, hospital, and radiotherapy chart reviews, operative notes, pathology, and chemotherapy flow sheets. All the patients underwent staging laparotomy, peritoneal cytology, total abdominal hysterectomy and salpingo oophorectomy, pelvic and para-aortic lymph node sampling, omentectomy, and cytoreductive surgery, when indicated followed by radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy. Therapy consisted of external beam radiation therapy in 11 patients (26%), systemic chemotherapy in 20 (48%), and both radiotherapy and chemotherapy in 11 (26%). The treatments were not assigned in a randomized fashion. The dose of external beam radiation therapy ranged from 45-50.40 Gy (median 45). Of the 31 patients (74%) who received chemotherapy, 18 received single-agent (58%), whereas 13 received multiagent chemotherapy (42%).
RESULTS - Median follow-up for all patients was 19 months (range 4-72). Median follow-up for the surviving patients was 36 months (range 21-72). Their median age was 65 years. Six patients (14%) had Stage I, 8 patients (19%) had Stage II, 10 (24%) had Stage III, and 18 (43%) had Stage IV disease. Twenty-nine patients (69%) had suffered recurrence at the time of last follow-up. The actuarial failure rate at 2 and 5 years was 58% and 67%, respectively. The majority of the patients (19/29) recurred in the abdomen, vagina, or pelvis (66%). Metastases outside the abdomen were much less common as the first site of failure (17%). Twenty-five patients (60%) had died at the time of reporting; the observed survival rate at 2 years and 5 years was 52% and 43%, respectively.
CONCLUSIONS - Our data suggest that, after multimodality therapy of FIGO Stage I-IV UPSC, most patients developed abdominopelvic (locoregional) failure, and the great majority of the failures occurred in the abdomen, vagina, and pelvis (66%). Abdominopelvic failure as a component of distant failure occurred in an additional 5 patients (17%). Distant failure alone occurred in 17% of the patients.We propose that future studies should combine whole abdominal radiotherapy (WART) with pelvic and vaginal boosts, in addition to chemotherapy for FIGO Stage I-IV UPSC, especially in patients with minimal residual disease, to attempt to improve the dismal prognosis of patients with UPSC.