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[Synchronous primary cancers of the endometrium and ovary: review of 43 cases].

OBJECTIVE: To investigate the clinical and pathological characteristics, treatment methods, and prognosis of synchronous primary cancers of the endometrium and ovary.

METHODS: The clinical data of 43 patients with synchronous primary cancers of the endometrium and ovary were retrospectively reviewed. The survival was calculated by Kaplan-Meier method and compared using the log-rank test.

RESULTS: The median age at diagnosis was 49 years (range, 28-73 years). The most common symptoms were abnormal vaginal bleeding (69.8%) and abdominal or pelvic pain (44.2%).Pelvic masses were found in 39.5% of the patients and enlarged corpus in 27.9% at physical examination, while pelvic masses were found in 67.4% of the 43 patients (29 cases) and thickening or abnormal endometrium in 23.3% (10 cases) during ultrasound examination. Of 25 patients examined by CT/MRI, pelvic masses were found in 13 cases and enlarged uterus in 11 cases. All 15 patients who underwent endometrial biopsies were proven to have endometrial carcinomas. Serum CA125 level was found to be elevated in 22 of the 34 examined cases (64.7%) with a median value of 500 U/ml (range, 39-3439 U/ml). FIGO stages of endometrial carcinomas: IA 18 cases, IB 20 cases, IC 2 cases, IIA 3 cases; Stages of ovarian carcinomas: IA 19 cases, IB 4 cases, IC 7 cases, II 4 cases, III C 9 cases. Twenty-four patients (55.8%) were in stage I both endometrial and ovarian carcinomas. Thirty-one patients underwent total hysterectomy plus bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy with omentectomy and appendectomy, meanwhile, 12 patients had pelvic lymph node dissection. Thirty-eight of the 43 patients (88.4%) had a pathologically proven endometrial adenocarcinoma. The predominant ovarian histology was endometrioid or mixed tumor with endometrioid components (30/43, 69.8%). Postoperatively, 26 patients (60.5%) received adjuvant chemotherapy alone, 12 had chemotherapy plus radiotherapy, only one patient had radiation alone and the remaining 4 cases received no adjuvant treatment. The 3- and 5-year survival rates of the group were 87.4% and 71.1%, respectively. The 3- and 5-year survival rates of patients with both endometrioid and ovarian carcinomas were higher than that of those with non-endometrioid or mixed subtypes (93.8%, 82.0% vs. 79.7%, 69.0%). The 3-year and 5-year survival rates of patients with early stage disease were better than those of the other patients (93.3%, 93.3% vs. 69.7%, 36.7%). Recurrence developed in 15 patients (34.9%). It was showed by univariate analysis that lower CA125 level, early FIGO stage, and adjuvant chemotherapy plus radiotherapy significantly and positively affect the 5-year survival rates, while only early FIGO stage and chemotherapy plus radiotherapy were revealed by multivariate analysis as independent prognostic factors.

CONCLUSION: Synchronous primary cancers of the endometrium and ovary are different from either primary endometrial carcinoma or ovarian cancer, while it can usually be detected in early stage and with a good prognosis. The impact of the CA125 level on prognosis needs to be further studied. Surgical treatment alone may be enough for early stage patients. Chemotherapy plus radiotherapy may be necessary for advanced stage patients.

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