Long-term results following an anatomically based surgical technique for resection of colon cancer: a comparison with results from complete mesocolic excision

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Abstract

Aim

Complete mesocolic excision (CME) has been advocated as likely to improve the long-term oncological outcome of colon cancer resection, although there is a paucity of long-term results in the literature. The aim of this study was to supplement our previously published results on colon cancer resection based on a standardized technique of precise dissection along anatomical planes with high vascular ligation and to compare our long-term results with those of recent European studies of CME.

Method

Data were drawn from a prospective hospital registry of consecutive resections for colon cancer between 1996 and 2007, including follow-up to the end of 2012. The principal outcomes from potentially curative resections were 5-year Kaplan–Meier rates of local recurrence, systemic recurrence, overall survival and cancer-specific survival. Secondary outcomes for all resections were postoperative complications, number of lymph nodes retrieved and R0 status.

Results

For 779 potentially curative resections the local recurrence rate was 2.1% (95% CI 1.3–3.4), the systemic recurrence rate was 10.2% (95% CI 8.1–12.7), the 5-year overall survival rate was 76.2% (95% CI 73.0–79.0) and the cancer-specific survival rate was 89.8% (95% CI 87.3–91.9). For all 905 resections, rates of 14 surgical complications were low and not dissimilar to those in a comparable study. The median lymph node count was 15 (range 0–113). R0 status was confirmed in 883/905 patients (97.6%; 95% CI 96.4–98.5).

Conclusion

For colon cancer, meticulous dissection along anatomical planes together with high vascular ligation results in few complications, a high R0 rate, low recurrence and high survival.

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