Introduction: Recent reports have suggested that uterine manipulators can induce lymphovascular space involvement (LVSI) by endometrial cancer in laparoscopic hysterectomy specimens. The prognostic significance of this phenomenon known as "vascular pseudo invasion" remains elusive. Materials and Methods: The authors conducted a retrospective, single institution study of patients who underwent initial surgery for grade 1 and grade 2 endometrioid endometrial cancers with LVSI. Cases were stratified by surgical approach (laparoscopy vs laparotomy). Clinicopathologic and procedure characteristics as well as outcome data were analyzed. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed. Disease-free survival (DFS) was analyzed using the Kaplan-Meier product limit method. Results: A total of 104 cases (20 laparoscopic, 84 laparotomy) were analyzed. Mean age (65 vs 64 years, respectively), stage distribution, mean number of lymph nodes sampled (18 vs 21, respectively) and use of adjuvant therapy was similar for both groups (p > 0.05). Mean body mass index (BMI) was 30 vs 35 kg/m2, respectively (p = 0.002). Mean follow up was 24 months (range 0.1-102). Univariate analysis demonstrated that LVSI in the laparoscopic setting was associated with worse DFS (p = 0.002). After adjusting for grade the risk of recurrence remained higher for laparoscopic cases (HR: 15.7, 95% CI 1.7-140.0, p = 0.014). Conclusions: Adjusted risk of recurrence associated with LVSI is higher in cases approached laparoscopically arguing against the concept of "vascular pseudo invasion" associated with the use of uterine manipulators and balloons. LVSI should be regarded as a serious risk factor and taken into account for triage to adjuvant therapies, even in laparoscopically treated early-stage endometrial cancer.
- Endometrial cancer
- Lymphovascular space invasion
- Pseudo invasion