Scientific publications

Analysis of Early Postoperative Morbidity Among Patients with Rectal Cancer Treated with and without Neoadjuvant Chemoradiotherapy

May 1, 2007 | Magazine: Annals of Surgical Oncology

Victor Valenti (1), Jose Luis Hernandez-Lizoain (1), Jorge Baixauli (1), Carlos Pastor (1), Javier Aristu (2), J. Diaz-Gonzalez (2), Juan Jose Beunza (3) and Javier A. Alvarez-Cienfuegos (1)

The impact of neoadjuvant treatment and their subsequent early complications in the treatment of rectal cancer has not been adequately assessed. The aim of this prospective study was to evaluate early postoperative morbidity and mortality among patients with rectal cancer treated with adjuvant radiotherapy and chemotherapy followed by surgery, compared with patients treated with surgery alone. We also identified independent risk factors associated with early major complications.

Between 1995 and 2004, 273 consecutive patients underwent treatment for rectal cancer. A total of 170 patients (group A) received preoperative radiotherapy with a total of 45-50.4 Gy (180 cGy per day) and 5-fluorouracil-based chemotherapy, followed by surgery; 103 patients (group B) were treated with surgery alone. Dependent variables related to patients, treatment, radiotherapy, and tumor were analyzed.

Both groups were similar with regard to age, sex, body mass index, American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) score, and tumor location but not for ileostomy (27% in group A vs. 6.8% in group B). The number of complications was similar in both groups (43.1% in group A vs. 44.6% in group B). No differences in wound infection (8.2% vs. 7.8%), intra-abdominal abscess (4.7% vs. 4.9%), anastomotic dehiscence (4.2% vs. 3.8%), postoperative hemorrhage (3.5% vs. 3.9%), urinary complications (6.5% vs. 4.9%), paralytic ileus (8.9% vs. 9.7%), or general complications (7.1% vs. 9.6%) were found. The global mortality in the first 30 days after surgery was .7%. An ASA score of III-IV and surgery duration longer than 3 hours were identified as independent prognostic factors for early complications.

Preoperative chemoradiation in patients with rectal cancer treated with surgery is not associated with a higher incidence of early postoperative complications. The patient's preoperative clinical condition and lengthy surgery time are prognostic factors for early complications.

CITATION  Ann Surg Oncol. 2007 May;14(5):1744-51