The problem of controlling pelvic lymph-node metastases is considered crucial in curing the patient with cervical carcinoma. A number of studies have shown a definite incidence of positive nodes in earlier stages at the time of surgery, although none could be palpated clinically. The failure rate in treatment of the various stages of this carcinoma parallels the percentage of lymph node metastases and has often been solely attributed to this factor. Collected data indicate a lymph node involvement of 16% for stage I, 31% for stage II, and 60% for stage III.1 The importance of this observation is that a certain percentage of patients with advanced disease exist, in a pathological sense, in the clinical stages of more limited involvement, and it raises the question as to whether these cases are curable.
The curability of positive lymph nodes by either radical surgery or irradiation has been a subject of
Rubin P. Cancer of the Cervix Stage III. JAMA. 1965;193(13):1101. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090130029006
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