PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NACT) does not increase morbidity in patients undergoing radical hysterectomy with lymphadenectomy for locally advanced cervical cancer. MATERIALS AND METGODS: A retrospective study was undertaken of 140 patients with locally advanced cervical cancer (FIGO stage Ia to IIb) who underwent radical hysterectomy with lymphadenectomy by the same surgeon at the same hospital. Among the 140 patients, 39 received NACT followed by radical hysterectomy with pelvic lymphadenectomy (NACT group). This group received three cycles consisting of cisplatin 100 mg/m2/day on day 1 and 5-fluorouracil 1000 mg/m2/day from day 1 to 5. The NACT group was compared, in terms of intraoperative morbidity and postoperative morbidity, with the other 101 patients who underwent radical hysterectomy with lymphadenectomy but without chemotherapy (surgery-only group). RESULTS: There were no significant differences in mean age, body weight or height between the two groups. The only significant difference was that the NACT patients had higher stages of cancer. The incidence of intraoperative morbidity did not differ between the NACT and surgery only patients. We considered the operation duration, amount of blood loss and need for transfusion as indicators of intraoperative morbidity. We could not find any significant differences in the duration of suprapubic catheterization, days of hemovac drainage, amount of drained hemovac fluid, days of hospitalization or postoperative febrile morbidity between the NACT and surgery-only groups. Patients in the surgery-only group had more postoperative complications (ureteral obstruction, intestinal obstruction, lymphocyst, lymphedema, and death) than the NACT group, although not to a statistically significant degree (P>0.05). CONCLUSION: In this retrospective review, there was no evidence that NACT increased intraoperative or postoperative morbidity in patients with locally advanced cervical cancer. As this was a retrospective study, other prospective, randomized studies are needed to confirm these results.