The online version of this article (https://doi.org/10.1007/s00464-018-6605-2) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Kai Liu, Xin-zu Chen, Wei-han Zhang have contributed equally to this work, were regarded as the co-first authors.
The preoperative work-up has limitations on finding peritoneal dissemination (PD) in gastric cancer patients. Laparoscopic exploration (LE) can discover radiographically occult PD, obtain accurate stage and avert futile laparotomy. The aim of our study was to introduce “Four-Step Procedure” LE in West China Hospital and further evaluate its safety and feasibility.
We conducted a retrospective analysis on 165 patients from July 2016 to December 2017 who underwent “Four-Step Procedure” LE in gastrointestinal surgery department of West China Hospital. All the patients were diagnosed with gastric adenocarcinoma without explicit distant metastasis through Computed Tomography and/or Gastrointestinal Ultrasonography. Peritoneal lavage cytological examination (CY) was routinely performed during LE in our research. The “Four-Step” technical process of LE was introduced comprehensively. The clinicopathologic features and the presence of PD or CY at LE were analyzed, and the stratified analysis by cT and cN stages on the proportion of P1 and/or CY1 was also reported in this study.
Total of 165 patients accepted LE in our study, among these patients: 27 (16.4%) patients with P1 and/or CY1: 19 (11.5%) patients were found PD (P1), 17 (10.3%) patients with positive cytological examination (CY1) and 9 (3.6%) patients with P1Cy1. The stratified analysis by cT stage indicated that there was no P1 and/or Cy1 in cT1–cT2 stages, 1 (2.7%) patient with P1 and 1 (2.7%) with Cy1 in cT3 stage, 18 (20.0%) patients with P1 and 16 (17.8%) with Cy1 in cT4 stage. After LE, there were 74 (44.8%) patients underwent laparoscopic assistant gastrectomy, 25 (15.2%) patients with open gastrectomy, 50 (30.3%) patients with neoadjuvant chemotherapy and 16 (9.7%) patients with palliative chemotherapy and/or conversion therapy.
“Four-Step Procedure” LE is reliable and feasible for gastric cancer. From our study, LE has unique superiority on ascertaining PD and cytological examination and LE should be recommended in cT4 stage gastric cancer before resection.
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