The role of Doppler ultrasonography in the diagnosis of advanced cervical cancer continues to be controversial. This study was designed to assess the clinical value of the technique in terms of predicting the response to chemotherapy in patients with advanced cervical cancer. Twenty-three patients with cancer of the cervix (FIGO stages Ib bulky-IIIb) and 20 healthy women underwent transvaginal color Doppler assessment of the uterine arteries (both ascending and descending branches) and the intracervical vessels. Statistical analysis was performed by Student's t test for paired and unpaired data. The intracervical vessels were the only site to show significant differences both in the resistance and in velocity parameters. A subgroup of 14 patients, scheduled for neoadjuvant chemotherapy, were evaluated before and at the completion of treatment. A significant increase in resistance and pulsatility index values and a decrease in peak systolic velocity were observed in the ten patients who responded to chemotherapy. Preliminary results of our study suggest that Doppler parameters can be clinically useful in the evaluation of the response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy. More patients, sampled in a prospective way in order to increase the number of non-responders, would be necessary to assess the possible role of Doppler ultrasound in predicting which patients will respond to chemotherapy.
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