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Intraoperative margin assessment of the radical trachelectomy specimen

N Ismiil, Z Ghorab, A Covens, S Nofech-Mozes, R Saad, V Dubé, M A Khalifa
Gynecologic Oncology 2009, 113 (1): 42-6

OBJECTIVE: To summarize our experience in the frozen section (FS) assessment of the trachelectomy surgical margin.

METHODS: All surgeries from 1994 to 2007 were performed by one surgeon. The FS examination was consistently carried out by a group of gynecologic pathologists according to the protocol described in details in this article. Cases were retrieved from the pathology files and the slides were reviewed by two pathologists.

RESULTS: 132 patients were identified with complete pathology records. They ranged from 17 to 46 years old (median 31). Surgeries were performed for clinical Stages 1A (n=39) and 1B (n=93) tumors (63 adenocarcinoma, 59 squamous cell carcinoma, 7 adenosquamous and 3 others). In 78 cases, no residual tumor was seen in the trachelectomy specimens as it was resected by the preceding LEEP or cone. The margin was reported as negative in 123, suspicious in 3 and positive in 6 cases. It was revised in 16 cases (6 positive, 2 suspicious and 8 negative but <5 mm). Final margin assessment agreed with the FS diagnosis in 130 (98.5%) and showed interpretational overcall in 2 cases (1.5%); only one of which resulted in a revised margin. No false negative intraoperative assessment was found.

CONCLUSIONS: We describe our FS protocol and summarize our data. This protocol is reliable since none of the patients was under-treated.

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