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In clinics treating large numbers of cases, the five-year survival rate in cancer of the cervix treated by radiation is 50% ± 10. The five-year cure rate for stage II is often quite similar to the overall survival (TAble 4). The stage II case poses a particularly tantalizing problem. About half of the patients have their cancer controlled by radiation therapy and half succumb to their disease. It is tempting to try and determine which patient will die of her disease either before or during treatment, while there is still time to use some other mode of therapy, ie, surgery.
In an attempt to solve this problem, we have examined the vaginal smear both before and during radiation treatment. We have focused our attention not on the malignant cells, but on the changes in the benign cells. My remarks will be confined here to the prognostic accuracy of changes in
Graham RM. Is Cytology a Reliable Prognosticator of Radiosensitivity? JAMA. 1965;193(10):825. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090100071022
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