World Journal of Surgery

, Volume 37, Issue 4, pp 878–882 | Cite as

A Nodal Positivity Constant: New Perspectives in Lymph Node Evaluation and Colorectal Cancer

  • Niamh M. Hogan
  • Desmond C. Winter



To date, associations between the number of lymph nodes evaluated, staging, and survival have been examined in the context of large population-based studies conducted by a small number of investigators. Therefore, although high-quality data are available, perspective is lacking.


Studies for this paper were identified by searches of Medline, Scopus, PubMed, and manual searching of references from articles, using the search terms ‘‘colorectal cancer’’, ‘‘nodal status’’ and ‘‘lymph node’’.


It is clear that survival benefit increases with the increasing number of lymph nodes harvested. Despite this observation, there has been no significant increase in the proportion of node-positive cancers over the past two decades.


The nodal positivity rate for colorectal cancer consistently approximates 40 % across a wide range of studies internationally, a phenomenon that has not previously been recognized in the literature. We review the evidence and introduce the concept of a nodal positivity constant.


Colorectal Cancer Nodal Positivity Lymph Node Ratio Complete Mesocolic Excision Nodal Positivity Rate 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Conflict of interest



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Copyright information

© Société Internationale de Chirurgie 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for Clinical Outcomes Research and Education (iCORE)Dublin 4Ireland

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