Surgical Endoscopy

, Volume 30, Issue 2, pp 464–470 | Cite as

Transanal total mesorectal excision for rectal carcinoma: short-term outcomes and experience after 80 cases

  • M. Veltcamp HelbachEmail author
  • C. L. Deijen
  • S. Velthuis
  • H. J. Bonjer
  • J. B. Tuynman
  • C. Sietses



Low anterior resection for distal and mid-rectal cancer is associated with high positive resection margins. Transanal total mesorectal excision (TaTME) is a new treatment in which the rectum is dissected transanally according to TME principles. The short-term results and oncological follow-up of the first 80 patients were described.


Between June 2012 and September 2014, all patients in the Gelderse Vallei Hospital and the VU University Medical Center with histologically proven distal or mid-rectal carcinomas without evidence of distant metastases underwent TaTME. Patients with T4 tumors were excluded. Transanal mobilization was performed with the aid of a single port and endoscopic instruments according to TME criteria.


Eighty patients were operated in a period of 2 years. Laparotomy was recommended and performed in four patients. Postoperative morbidity was 39 %. Ten (12 %) complications were graded as severe (Clavien–Dindo grade 3, 4 and 5) and needed re-intervention. Median operative time was 204 min (range 91–447). Median hospital stay was 8 days (range 3–41). Specimens were graded as complete in 88 % of the patients, nearly complete in 9 % and incomplete in 3 %. A positive circumferential resection margin (<2 mm) was observed in two patients. During the two and half years study period, a local recurrence was observed in two patients.


TaTME is a safe alternative to standard laparoscopic TME in selected low-risk patients with rectal carcinoma when treated by an experienced colorectal team. In the future, randomized trials are necessary to prove its oncological safety.


Colorectal Cancer G-I Endoscopy 



Dr. C. Sietses has received lecturing fee of Applied Medical and a proctor fee from Covidien. Drs. M. Veltcamp Helbach, Drs. C.L. Deijen, Drs. S. Velthuis, Prof. Dr. H.J. Bonjer and Dr. J.B. Tuynman have no conflict of interest or financial ties to disclose.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Veltcamp Helbach
    • 1
    Email author
  • C. L. Deijen
    • 2
  • S. Velthuis
    • 1
  • H. J. Bonjer
    • 2
  • J. B. Tuynman
    • 2
  • C. Sietses
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of SurgeryGelderse Vallei HospitalEdeThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Department of SurgeryVU University Medical CenterAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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