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Ann Surg. 2007 Feb;245(2):232-40.

Comparison of the outcomes between open and minimally invasive esophagectomy.

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  • 1Upper Gastrointestinal and Soft Tissue Unit, University of Queensland, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Woolloongabba, Queensland, Australia. M.Smithers@mailbox.uq.edu.au

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

We report patient outcomes from esophageal resection with respect to morbidity and cancer survival comparing open thoracotomy and laparotomy (Open), with a thoracoscopic/laparotomy approach (Thoracoscopic-Assisted) and a total thoracoscopic/laparoscopic approach (Total MIE).

METHODS:

From a prospective database of all patients managed with cancer of the esophagus or esophagogastric junction, patients who had a resection using one of three techniques were analyzed to assess postoperative variables, adequacy of cancer clearance, and survival.

RESULTS:

The number of patients for each procedure was as follows: Open, 114; Thoracoscopic-Assisted, 309; and Total MIE, 23. The groups were comparable with respect to preoperative variables. The differences in the postoperative variables were: less median blood loss in the Thoracoscopic-Assisted (400 mL) and Total MIE (300 mL) groups versus Open (600 mL); longer time for Total MIE (330 minutes) versus Thoracoscopic-Assisted (285 minutes) and Open (300 minutes); longer median time in hospital for Open (14 days) versus Thoracoscopic-Assisted (13 days), Total MIE (11 days) and less stricture formation in the Open (6.1%) versus Thoracoscopic-Assisted (21.6%), Total MIE (36%). There were no differences in lymph node retrieval for each of the approaches. Open had more stage III patients (65.8%) versus Thoracoscopic-Assisted (34.4%), Total MIE (52.1%). There was no difference in survival when the groups were compared stage for stage for overall median or 3-year survival.

CONCLUSION:

Minimally invasive techniques to resect the esophagus in patients with cancer were confirmed to be safe and comparable to an open approach with respect to postoperative recovery and cancer survival.

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