Published online May 14, 2020. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v26.i18.2232
Peer-review started: March 8, 2020
First decision: March 27, 2020
Revised: April 13, 2020
Accepted: April 29, 2020
Article in press: April 29, 2020
Published online: May 14, 2020
The conventional guidelines suggest the surgeons to obtain an extensive resection margin during surgery for gastric cancer. Several recent studies have raised questions regarding the need for such extensive resection and necessity of total gastrectomy for tumors located on middle-third of stomach, while the consensus has not been reached. There are some studies those demonstrate the unnecessity of longer proximal resection margin (PRM) distance in early gastric cancer. However, there are very few regarding the PRM distance for advanced gastric cancer (AGC).
We would like to discover the optimal PRM distance for patients who undergo gastrectomy for AGC.
The objective of this study was to investigate the influence of the PRM distance on the oncologic outcomes of patients who underwent gastrectomy for AGC, thus to prove the safety of the PRM distance shorter than the conventional literatures suggest.
We retrospectively collected data from 1518 patients who underwent total gastrectomy (TG) or distal gastrectomy (DG) for AGC between June 2004 and December 2007. The distances of the PRM and DRM were defined as the shortest distance from the most proximal or distal end to each resection line, measured on formalin-fixed surgical specimens by pathologists. The demographics and clinicopathologic outcomes were compared according to the different PRM categories and an analysis on the influence of PRM on recurrence-free survival and overall survival was performed.
The DG and TG groups showed no statistical difference in RFS or OS according to the distance of PRM. Multivariate analysis also revealed that in both groups, there was no significant difference in RFS or OS according to the PRM distance.
The distance of PRM did not affect the incidence of recurrence or local recurrence. A greater PRM distance was not associated with better survival outcomes and a distance as short as < 1 cm did not correlate with worse OS or RFS. Therefore, the PRM distance shorter than conventional literatures suggest may be accepted.
Further research would be essential to set a guideline for the optimal PRM distance for AGC. A long-term prospective study with detailed data on PRM including measurements done during operation by the surgeons and after fixation by the pathologists should give better answers.