Anal sphincter reconstruction by dynamic graciloplasty after abdominoperineal resection for cancer
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PURPOSE: Chronic low-frequency electrical stimulation can safely transform fatiguing muscle into fatigue-resistant muscle. This fundamental discovery was used to reconstruct the anal sphincter. Dynamic graciloplasty was found to be effective in the treatment of fecal incontinence. Our study was undertaken to investigate the oncologic, functional, and quality of life results of dynamic graciloplasty anal reconstruction after an abdominoperineal resection for carcinoma. METHODS: Between April 1993 and April 1996, nine patients (4 males) with a median age of 51.2 (range, 29–69) years underwent an abdominoperineal resection for carcinoma (4 had a rectal adenocarcinoma and 5 had an epidermoidal anal tumor) and an anal sphincter reconstruction with electrically stimulated graciloplasty. Oncologic and functional results were evaluated after a mean follow-up of 32 (range, 14–59) months. A quality of life questionnaire was filled out by seven patients. RESULTS: Sphincter reconstruction required the same hospitalization period as abdominoperineal resection. Two patients died from evolutive disease. Three patients were operated on twice, one for immediate colonic necrosis, two for colonic perforation after enema. One of them refused the graciloplasty and had an abdominoperineal resection. Six patients were dysfunctioned. The mean resting pressure was 24±10 mmHg, and the mean pressure during stimulation was 95±25 mmHg. Five patients were continent for solids and liquid; four wore less than three pads per day, and one wore more than three. Four patients used enemas twice a week; one patient had spontaneous evacuation. The quality of life questionnaire showed that the mean scores for social interaction, symptoms, and psychological and physical states were 2.1, 2.2, 2.4, and 2.7, respectively. The mean value was 1.5 CONCLUSIONS: Total anorectal reconstruction with dynamic graciloplasty is an oncologically safe procedure. Functional results improve with time, but careful patient selection guarantees a successful functional outcome. Technical progress is necessary to improve the quality of life.
Key wordsAbdominoperineal resection Cancer Sphincter reconstruction Dynamic graciloplasty Functional outcome Quality of life
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