Principles of Surgical Treatment for Carcinoma of the Esophagus: Analysis of Lymph Node Involvement

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Extensive lymph node dissections in the posterior mediastinum and ubdomen were performed during resections of esophageal carcinomas. Analysis of lymph nodes demonstrated a widespread distribution of positive lymph nodes regardless of the location of the tumor. The distribution of positive lymph nodes was noticed in the area between the superior mediastinum and the celiac region. The studies were also made on the distribution of positive lymph nodes in the superior gastric region, particularly in the region of the lesser curvature of the stomach. The following principles should be followed when carcinoma of the esophagus is surgically treated. I) Lymph node dissection of the whole length of the posterior mediastinum, superior gastric region, and celiac region must be performed. 2) Total thoracic and abdominal esophagectomy with resection of (he proximal lesser curvature and cardia, including the first to fourth branches, and preferably the fifth branch of the left gastric artery, is mandatory in order to remove possible lymphatic and intramural spread ol tumors. 3) Satisfactory esophageal replacement in one stage must follow. Of the 354 patients with carcinoma of the esophagus admitted to the Toranomon Hospital, 210 underwent resections and reconstructions, for a resectability rate of 59.3'.?. The operative mortality rate was \A'A and the overall five-year survival rate was 34.6%

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