Greetings from the Principal Investigator of the Debulk Study

Hello! I am Ju-Won Roh, the principal investigator of the Debulk study.

Cervical cancer is one of the cancers that pose the greatest threat to women’s health. Although cervical cancer screening and vaccination have paved a path towards prevention, many women worldwide still suffer from cervical cancer.

While there have been considerable advancements in cervical cancer treatments that led to improved survival rates, there is still ongoing debate surrounding the best treatment strategies for advanced cervical cancer cases. Notably, established guidelines for how to optimally treat cases of locally advanced cervical cancer with lymph node metastasis-- classified as stage IIICr according to the FIGO 2018 cervical cancer staging guidelines-- is lacking. This is a serious concern as patients with stage IIICr cervical cancer have a higher likelihood of recurrence.

The Debulk trial is an international multicenter phase III randomized trial designed to evaluate the therapeutic effect of surgically removing metastatic lymph nodes prior to chemoradiation in patients with stage IIICr cervical cancer. Lymph node metastasis is the most crucial prognostic factor for cervical cancer and directly correlates with patient survival. Despite advancements in radiation therapy techniques that have greatly improved treatment outcomes, some patients still experience recurrence, which can ultimately lead to death.

As a gynecologic oncologist for the past twenty years, I have witnessed countless patients suffer from gynecologic cancers. Each time, I have contemplated what the most effective treatment approach would be.

I hope that this study helps improve the treatment methods for advanced cervical cancer, contributing not only to increasing patient survival but also their quality of life. Through international collaboration, this study also presents an opportunity to strengthen the quality of research in our respective countries. Your collaboration is essential and sincerely requested.

Thank you for your time and consideration. I look forward to working with you to further our understanding and treatment of cervical cancer.

Ju-Won Roh, MD, PhD