‘Laparoscopic gastric surgery safe, effective for advanced gastric cancer patients’

Lee Han-soo  Published 2019.07.05  14:53  Updated 2019.07.05 14:53


A study has found that laparoscopic surgery, which is known to have an advantage only at early stage gastric cancer surgery, is also effective in advanced gastric cancer.

Professor Lee Hyuk-joon

The research, conducted by 13 local medical institutions, including Seoul National University Hospital (SNUH) and Dong-A University Hospital, came to such a conclusion after investigating multiple criteria between laparoscopic and open gastrectomy surgery on advanced gastric cancer patients.

The research criteria included the incidence of complications, mortality, hospitalization days, postoperative pain scores, and inflammation levels.

As a result, the postoperative laparoscopic group showed excellent results compared to the open gastrectomy surgery group in terms of complication incidence (16.6 vs. 24.1 percent), operative mortality (0.4 vs. 0.6 percent) and hospitalization period (8.1 days vs. 9.3 days).

Laparoscopic surgery also showed better results in most indications, such as pain index and inflammatory response. Laparoscopic surgery, introduced in the gastric cancer treatment 20 years ago, is now a mainstream surgery option for gastric cancer.

However, the hospitals mainly performed the surgery on early gastric cancer patients as it was challenging for physicians to cope with emergencies such as hemorrhage.

“It is time to abandon the preconception that laparoscopic surgery is dangerous or inferior to conventional open surgery in advanced gastric cancer,” said Professor Lee Hyuk-joon, lead author of the paper and professor of gastric surgery at SNUH.

He suggested that laparoscopic surgery could provide a clear view through laparoscopic cameras because of the low complication rate and reduced bleeding due to delicate and stable operation.

Annals of Surgery published the result of the study.

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