Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California

UC San Diego

UC San Diego Previously Published Works bannerUC San Diego

Definitive vs palliative pelvic radiation for patients with newly diagnosed stage IVB cervical cancer treated with bevacizumab – An exploratory study



Platinum-based chemotherapy and bevacizumab is the standard treatment for stage IVB cervical cancer. When metastases resolve, the benefit of radiating the primary tumor is unclear. We investigate the effect of pelvic radiation on PFS following chemotherapy and bevacizumab in stage IVB cervical cancer.


This is a retrospective series of 29 patients with stage IVB cervical cancer treated with platinum-based chemotherapy and bevacizumab. 3 subgroups were evaluated: definitive pelvic radiation, palliative radiation, and no radiation. The primary outcome was the mean PFS. Progression was determined radiographically. Kaplan-Meier method and the log-rank test for equality analyzed OS and PFS.


The median OS was 38.4 months. 11 patients (38%) received definitive radiation, 9 (31%) received palliative and 9 (31%) received no radiation. 7/8 in the palliative group, 7/10 who received no radiation and all in the definitive group experienced progression. The median PFS was 7.5 months and not statistically different (p = 0.62). The median OS was not attained in the definitive group, was 23 months [19.6, -] for the palliative group and 19 months [24.9-45.4] for the no radiation group (p = 0.13). OS was higher in patients receiving definitive radiation vs all others (median OS survival not reached vs 6.6 months, p = 0.04). No difference in PFS between those receiving definitive radiation vs others (12 months vs 5.1 months p = 0.32).


Definitive radiation is associated with improved survival among in stage IVB cervical cancer treated with chemotherapy and bevacizumab. This association could be due to treatment, patient, or disease factors associated with improved oncologic outcomes. In absence of higher-level data, shared decision-making with consideration for comorbidities and performance status should be employed.

Many UC-authored scholarly publications are freely available on this site because of the UC's open access policies. Let us know how this access is important for you.

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View