Short- and Long-term Outcomes After Laparoscopic Versus Open Emergency Resection for Colon Cancer: An Observational Propensity Score-matched Study
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Case series suggest the feasibility and safety of emergency resection of colon cancer by laparoscopy. The present study compares short- and long-term outcomes of laparoscopic and open resection for colon cancers treated as emergencies.
The study was a propensity score-matched design based on a prospective database. From October 2006 to December 2011, emergency laparoscopic colon cancer resections were 1:2 propensity score-matched to open cases. Covariates for match-estimation were age, gender, American Society of Anesthesiologists grade, procedure type, tumor site, and reason for emergency surgery. Short-term outcomes included oncological quality surrogates (lymph node harvest and R stage), need for a stoma, length of hospital stay, and postoperative complications. For long-term outcomes, overall and recurrence-free survival rates were analyzed with Kaplan–Meier curves.
During the study period, a total of 217 colon cancers were resected (181 open and 36 laparoscopic) as emergencies. The laparoscopic cases were matched to 72 open cases. Median follow-up was 3.6 [95 % confidence interval (CI) 2.3–4.3] years. The overall 3-year survival rate was 51 % (95 % CI 35–76) in the laparoscopic group versus 43 % (95 % CI 32–58) in the open group (p = 0.24). The 3-year recurrence-free survival rate in the laparoscopic group was 35 % (95 % CI 20–60) versus 37 % (95 % CI 27–50) in the open group (p = 0.53). Median lymph node harvest (17 vs. 13 nodes; p = 0.041) and median length of hospital stay (7.5 vs. 11.0 days; p = 0.019) favored laparoscopy.
Our data suggest that selective emergency laparoscopy for colon cancer is not inferior to open surgery with regard to short- and long-term outcomes. Laparoscopy resulted in a shorter length of hospital stay.