The optimal surgical management for 1- to 2-cm, nonmetastatic rectal neuroendocrine tumors remains unknown.
We sought to determine overall survival and operative outcomes in patients who underwent local excision versus radical resection of rectal neuroendocrine tumors.
The National Cancer Database (2004–2013) was queried to identify patients with nonmetastatic rectal neuroendocrine tumors who underwent local excision or radical resection.
The study included national data.
There were 274 patients in the local excision group and 47 patients in the radical resection group.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:
The primary outcome was overall survival. Secondary outcomes included 30-day mortality, hospital length of stay, and procedural outcomes.
There were no differences in demographics between the 2 groups. Patients who underwent radical resection had slightly larger tumors with higher stage and grade. Patients undergoing local excision had higher rates of positive margins (8.23% vs 0%; p = 0.04). There were no deaths within 30 days in either group, but patients who had radical resection had longer median hospital length of stay (0 vs 3 d; p < 0.01). After adjusting with a Cox proportional hazards model, no difference was seen in survival between the 2 patient groups (HR = 2.39 (95% CI, 0.85–6.70); p = 0.10).
There are several limitations, which include that this work is a retrospective review; the data set does not include variables such as depth of tumor invasion, which may influence surgical treatment or local recurrence rates; and patients were not randomly assigned to treatment groups.
There is no survival benefit to radical resection of 1- to 2-cm, nonmetastatic rectal neuroendocrine tumors. This suggests that local excision may be a feasible and less morbid option for intermediate-sized rectal neuroendocrine tumors. See Video Abstract at http://links.lww.com/DCR/A744.