Systematic Reviews
Copyright ©The Author(s) 2019. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Gastroenterol. Jul 14, 2019; 25(26): 3438-3449
Published online Jul 14, 2019. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v25.i26.3438
Synchronous resection of esophageal cancer and other organ malignancies: A systematic review
Dimitrios Papaconstantinou, Diamantis I Tsilimigras, Dimitrios Moris, Adamantios Michalinos, Aikaterini Mastoraki, Efstratia Mpaili, Natasha Hasemaki, Anargyros Bakopoulos, Dimitrios Filippou, Dimitrios Schizas
Dimitrios Papaconstantinou, Anargyros Bakopoulos, Third Department of Surgery, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Attikon University Hospital, Athens 12462, Greece
Diamantis I Tsilimigras, Department of Surgery, Division of Surgical Oncology, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute, Columbus, OH 43210, United States
Dimitrios Moris, Department of Surgery, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, United States
Adamantios Michalinos, Department of Anatomy, European University of Cyprus, Nicosia 2404, Cyprus
Aikaterini Mastoraki, Efstratia Mpaili, Natasha Hasemaki, Dimitrios Schizas, First Department of Surgery, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Laikon General Hospital, Athens 11527, Greece
Dimitrios Filippou, Department of Anatomy and Surgical Anatomy, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Medical School, Athens 11527, Greece
Author contributions: All authors equally contributed to this paper with conception and design of the study, literature review and analysis, drafting and critical revision and editing, and final approval of the final version.
Conflict-of-interest statement: The authors declare no conflicts of interest.
PRISMA 2009 Checklist statement: The authors have read the PRISMA 2009 Checklist, and the manuscript was prepared and revised according to the PRISMA 2009 Checklist.
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article which was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
Corresponding author: Dimitrios Filippou, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor, Chief Doctor, Surgeon, Surgical Oncologist, Department of Anatomy and Surgical Anatomy, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Medical School, 75 Mikras Asias str, GR-11527 Goudi, Athens 11527, Greece.
Telephone: +30-6976414636
Received: March 15, 2019
Peer-review started: March 15, 2019
First decision: April 5, 2019
Revised: May 1, 2019
Accepted: May 31, 2019
Article in press: June 1, 2019
Published online: July 14, 2019

Neoplasms arising in the esophagus may coexist with other solid organ or gastrointestinal tract neoplasms in 6% to 15% of patients. Resection of both tumors synchronously or in a staged procedure provides the best chances for long-term survival. Synchronous resection of both esophageal and second primary malignancy may be feasible in a subset of patients; however, literature on this topic remains rather scarce.


To analyze the operative techniques employed in esophageal resections combined with gastric, pancreatic, lung, colorectal, kidney and liver resections and define postoperative outcomes in each case.


We conducted a systematic review according to PRISMA guidelines. We searched the Medline database for cases of patients with esophageal tumors coexisting with a second primary tumor located in another organ that underwent synchronous resection of both neoplasms. All English language articles deemed eligible for inclusion were accessed in full text. Exclusion criteria included: (1) Hematological malignancies; (2) Head/neck/pharyngeal neoplasms; (3) Second primary neoplasms in the esophagus or the gastroesophageal junction; (4) Second primary neoplasms not surgically excised; and (5) Preclinical studies. Data regarding the operative strategy employed, perioperative outcomes and long-term outcomes were extracted and analyzed using descriptive statistics.


The systematic literature search yielded 23 eligible studies incorporating a total of 117 patients. Of these patients, 71% had a second primary neoplasm in the stomach. Those who underwent total gastrectomy had a reconstruction using either a colonic (n = 23) or a jejunal (n = 3) conduit while for those who underwent gastric preserving resections (i.e., non-anatomic/wedge/distal gastrectomies) a conventional gastric pull-up was employed. Likewise, in cases of patients who underwent esophagectomy combined with pancreaticoduodenectomy (15% of the cohort), the decision to preserve part of the stomach or not dictated the reconstruction method (whether by a gastric pull-up or a colonic/jejunal limb). For the remaining patients with coexisting lung/colorectal/kidney/liver neoplasms (14% of the entire patient population) the types of resections and operative techniques employed were identical to those used when treating each malignancy separately.


Despite the poor quality of available evidence and the great interstudy heterogeneity, combined procedures may be feasible with acceptable safety and satisfactory oncologic outcomes on individual basis.

Keywords: Esophagectomy, Esophageal neoplasm, Second primary, Multiple primary, Concurrent neoplasms, Management

Core tip: Esophageal neoplasms manifesting synchronously with other neoplasms of the gastrointestinal tract or solid organs are a unique challenge for the surgeon contemplating their combined resection. Concerns arise about whether patients can tolerate the substantial surgical burden to be exerted on them. Furthermore, the type of esophagectomy required or the choice of conduit for reconstruction when the stomach is to be excised as part of the procedure further complicate the decision-making process. By summing and analyzing existing literature on the topic we aim to determine the best surgical approach depending on the location of the second primary tumor, evaluate the perioperative safety of these procedures and clarify their oncologic outcomes.