Results of Surgical Salvage Treatment for Anal Canal Cancer: A Retrospective Analysis with Overview of the Literature

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Background and Aim: Chemoradiotherapy (CRT) is the gold standard treatment for anal cancer, which permits the maintenance of the anal function. However, about 30-40% of patients develop local disease progression, for which surgery represents a good salvage therapy. The aim of this study is to evaluate survival and morbidity rate in patients who undergo salvage surgery in our single institution, with an overview of the literature. Methods: A retrospective study was carried out on patients who underwent surgical treatment of anal canal cancer after failure of CRT. We evaluated overall survival at 1, 3, and 5 years and postoperative morbidity rate. Results: Twenty patients who underwent radical surgery with abdominoperineal resection were included in the study. The survival rates at 1, 3, and 5 years were 75, 60, and 37.4%; with a disease-free survival of 67, 53, and 35%, respectively. There was no postoperative mortality. The morbidity rate was 35%. Conclusion: Surgery represents the recommended therapy for persistent or recurrent anal canal cancer after CRT, with a good survival rate and an acceptable morbidity.

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