Mesenteric lymph node (MLN) involvement is often observed in ovarian cancer (OC) with rectosigmoid invasion. This study aimed to investigate the clinical significance of MLN involvement in the pattern of liver metastasis in patients with OC.
We included 85 stage II-IV OC patients who underwent primary or interval debulking surgery. Twenty-seven patients underwent rectosigmoid resection, whose status of MLN involvement was judged from hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) staining of resected specimens. The prognostic significance of clinicopathological characteristics, including MLN involvement, was evaluated using univariate and multivariate analyses.
MLN involvement was detected in 14/85 patients with stage II-IV OC. Residual tumor status, cytology of ascites, and MLN involvement were independent prognostic factors for progression-free survival (PFS; p = 0.033, p = 0.014, and p = 0.008, respectively). When patients were classified into three groups (no MLN, one MLN, two or more MLNs), the number of MLNs involved corresponded to three distinct groups in PFS (p = 0.001). The 3-year cumulative incidence of liver metastasis of patients with MLN involvement was significantly higher than that of patients without MLN involvement (61.1% vs. 8.9%, p < 0.001). MLN involvement was significantly associated with liver metastasis of hematogenous origin (p < 0.001) compared with peritoneal disseminated origin.
MLN involvement is an important prognostic factor in OC, predicting poor prognosis and liver metastasis of hematogenous origin.