INTRODUCTION: Multiple case reports have suggested that laparoscopic resection of colon cancer may alter the pattern or incidence of cancer recurrence. All reports lack a significant denominator to evaluate the incidence of surgical wound recurrence. We hypothesized that wound recurrence incidence is not increased by laparoscopic resection of colon cancer.
METHODS: A prospective registry was initiated under the auspices of The American Society of Ccolon and Rectal Surgeons, American College of Surgeons, and Society of American Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgeons in 1992. Patients having laparoscopic colon resection were voluntarily entered and followed until June 1995. Recurrences were evaluated by the primary surgeon and reported to the registry.
RESULTS: A total of 504 patients treated for cancer were identified in the registry. A minimum follow-up of one year was obtained for 480 of 493 evaluable patients (97.4 percent). Wound recurrence was identified in five patients (1.1 percent). Recurrence status was unknown in 18 patients (3.8 percent).
CONCLUSION: Wound recurrence rates appear to be low. Although length of follow-up is limited, patterns of recurrence from previous studies suggest that 80 percent of recurrences should have occurred within one year. Given the limitations of a Phase II study, the hypothesis that recurrence rate is low is supported. However, prospective randomized trials are needed to establish if any difference in wound recurrence rates after laparoscopic or open resection of colorectal cancer exists.
(C) The ASCRS 1996