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Br J Surg. 2015 Jun;102(7):735-45. doi: 10.1002/bjs.9782. Epub 2015 Mar 31.

Meta-analysis of reconstruction techniques after low anterior resection for rectal cancer.

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Department of General, Visceral and Transplantation Surgery, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany; Study Centre of the German Surgical Society, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany.



Options for reconstruction after low anterior resection (LAR) for rectal cancer include straight or side-to-end coloanal anastomosis (CAA), colonic J pouch and transverse coloplasty. This systematic review compared these techniques in terms of function, surgical outcomes and quality of life.


A systematic literature search (MEDLINE, Embase and the Cochrane Library, from inception of the databases until November 2014) was conducted to identify randomized clinical trials comparing reconstructive techniques after LAR. Random-effects meta-analyses were carried out, and results presented as weighted odds ratios or mean differences with corresponding 95 per cent c.i. A network meta-analysis was conducted for the outcome anastomotic leakage.


The search yielded 965 results; 21 trials comprising data from 1636 patients were included. Colonic J pouch was associated with lower stool frequency and antidiarrhoeal medication use for up to 1 year after surgery compared with straight CAA. Transverse coloplasty and side-to-end CAA had similar functional outcomes to the colonic J pouch. No superiority was found for any of the techniques in terms of anastomotic leak rate.


Colonic J pouch and side-to-end CAA or transverse coloplasty lead to a better functional outcome than straight CAA for the first year after surgery.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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