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Hepatogastroenterology. 2004 Mar-Apr;51(56):613-7.

Postoperative complications following gastrectomy for gastric cancer during the last decade.

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Department of Digestive Surgery, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, Kyoto, Japan.



The reduction in the incidence of severe postoperative complications has resulted in a significant increase in the survival of patients with gastric cancer.


A total of 879 patients undergoing gastrectomy for gastric cancer during the last decade were retrospectively evaluated for postoperative complications, mortality and associated risk factors.


The most frequent complications were anastomotic leakage (3.0%) and wound infection (2.8%) followed by the development of pancreatic fistulae (2.2%) and intra-abdominal abscesses (1.5%). Multiple logistic regression analysis identified various independent risk factors including the extent of lymph node dissection (D1D2 vs. D3) for anastomotic leakage (RR 3.6, P<0.05), splenectomy or distal pancreatosplenectomy for pancreatic fistulae (RR 27.4, P<0.0001) and operative time (360 min < or =) for intra-abdominal abscess (RR 4.8, P<0.05). In total, fourteen patients (1.6%, n=879) died from postoperative complications, with 5 patients dying following non-curative gastrectomy (5.6%, n=90). The complications most associated with death were anastomotic leakage (4 patients) and pneumonia (2 patients).


In view of the potential risk of complications, we should carefully evaluate the indications for aggressive lymph node dissection and/or combined resection of neighboring organs as well as non-curative gastrectomy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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