Introduction Oesophageal perforation following chemoradiotherapy for oesophageal cancer is a devastating condition but there have been no studies investigating the role of emergency oesophagectomy for this life threatening situation. METHODS This retrospective study comprised all cases of emergency oesophagectomy for oesophageal perforation after chemoradiotherapy for oesophageal carcinoma at a major centre for oesophageal surgery in Germany between 2004 and 2013. RESULTS A total of 13 patients (mean age: 58.9 years) were identified. During the same time period, 356 elective oesophagectomies were performed. Tumour entities were squamous cell carcinoma (n=12) and adenocarcinoma of the oesophagus (n=1). Alcoholism (odds ratio [OR]: 25.79, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 6.70-121.70, p<0.0001) and chronic pulmonary disease (OR: 3.76, 95% CI: 1.06-14.96, p=0.027) were more common among the emergency cases. Oesophageal rupture was caused by perforation of an oesophageal stent (10 cases) or perforation during implantation of a percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy tube (3 cases). Emergency oesophagectomy was carried out either as discontinuity resection (10/13) or oesophagectomy with immediate reconstruction (3/13). Compared with the elective cases, patients undergoing emergency oesophagectomy had significantly higher odds for sustaining perioperative sepsis (OR: 4.42, 95% CI: 1.23-16.45, p=0.01), acute renal failure (OR: 6.49, 95% CI: 1.57-24.15, p=0.005) and pneumonia (OR: 24.33, 95% CI: 3.52-1,046.65, p<0.0001). Furthermore, slow respiratory weaning was more common and there was a significantly higher tracheostomy rate (OR: 4.64, 95% CI: 1.14-16.98, p=0.02). Oesophageal discontinuity was eventually reversed in eight patients. Emergency oesophagectomy patients had odds that were three times higher for fatal outcome (OR: 3.59, 95% CI: 0.77- 13.64, p=0.05). The overall mortality was 4/13. The remaining nine patients had a mean survival of 25.1 months (range: 5-46 months). The two-year-survival-rate was 38.5% (5/13). CONCLUSIONS Despite the most unfavourable preconditions, the results of emergency oesophagectomy for oesophageal perforation after chemoradiotherapy are not desperate. The procedure is not only justified but life saving.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Annals of the Royal College of Surgeons of England|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|
- Emergency oesophagectomy
- Oesophageal cancer
ASJC Scopus subject areas