PURPOSE: To compare the efficacy of two twice-per-day fractionated high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapies with a historical control group treated with low dose rate (LDR) brachytherapy for cervical cancer patients. METHODS AND MATERIALS: From 1985 to 1988, 92 patients with cancer of the cervic were treated by remote-controlled, HDR brachytherapy, six fractions of 7 Gy per fraction (42 Gy) at point A (HDR-6). Fifty-seven patients were treated with four fractions of 8 Gy per fraction (32 Gy) at point A (HDR-4). A twice-per-day program was used for all HDR patients by two split courses. As a historical control, treatment results of 259 patients treated with LDR brachytherapy (40 Gy in two split courses) were compared with those of the two HDR regimens. All patients received whole pelvic external irradiation, 36-45 Gy (mostly 40 Gy) before brachytherapy. RESULTS: Five-year local control rates were not significantly different for the three groups (HDR-6 = 82.0%, HDR-4 = 85.5%, and LDR = 89.5%, respectively). Five-year survival rates were also comparable (67.7%, 77.9%, and 74.1%, respectively). However, late complications were lower in HDR-4 than HDR-6 (11.0% vs. 25.6%). CONCLUSIONS: Both 5-year local control and survival rates were comparable among the three groups. However, HDR-4, which was more biologically equivalent to our LDR regimen, showed fewer complications compared to HDR-6. In addition, our twice-per-day schedule shortened the hospital stay.