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15.06.2017 | Original Scientific Report | Ausgabe 11/2017

World Journal of Surgery 11/2017

Sphincter-Preserving Surgery for Low Rectal Cancers: Incidence and Risk Factors for Permanent Stoma

World Journal of Surgery > Ausgabe 11/2017
Joanna Chung Kiu Mak, Dominic Chi Chung Foo, Rockson Wei, Wai Lun Law



Advances in surgical techniques and paradigm changes in rectal cancer treatment have led to a drastic decline in the abdominoperineal resection rate, and sphincter-preserving operation is possible in distal rectal cancer.


The aim of this study is to evaluate the long-term incidence of permanent stoma after sphincter-preserving surgery for low rectal cancer and its corresponding risk factors.


From 2000 to 2014, patients who underwent sphincter-preserving low anterior resection for low rectal cancer (within 5 cm from the anal verge) were included. The occurrence of permanent stoma over time and its risk factors were investigated by using a Cox proportional hazards regression model.


This study included 194 patients who underwent ultra-low anterior resection for distal rectal cancer, and the median follow-up period was 77 months for the surviving patients. Forty-six (23.7%) patients required a permanent stoma eventfully. Anastomotic-related complications and disease progression were the main reasons for permanent stoma. Clinical anastomotic leakage (HR 5.72; 95% CI 2.31–14.12; p < 0.001) and neoadjuvant chemoradiation (HR 2.34; 95% CI 1.12–4.90; p = 0.024) were predictors for permanent primary stoma. Local recurrence (HR 16.09; 95% CI 5.88–44.03; p < 0.001) and T4 disease (HR 11.28; 95% CI 2.99–42.49; p < 0.001) were predictors for permanent secondary stoma. The 5- and 10-year cumulative incidence for permanent stoma was 24.1 and 28.0%, respectively.


Advanced disease, prior chemoradiation, anastomotic leakage and local recurrence predispose patients to permanent stoma should be taken into consideration when contemplating sphincter-preserving surgery.

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