Introduction The impact of the height of rectal cancer from the anal verge and its ultimate clinical significance is controversial 1 (as debated by Tekkis et alin their published paper). The aim of this study is to assess the influence of rectal cancer height and oncological outcomes treated in a specialised colorectal cancer unit.
Method Prospectively collected data on a patient pathway manager (PPM) for patients who underwent primary rectal cancer treatment at our unit from January 2005 till December 2010 were analysed. Low cancer was defined as tumour <5 cm from the anal verge, as assessed by endoscopy, digital rectal examination and MRI scan. Recurrent cancer, palliative resection, perforated tumours and those requiring pelvic exenteration were excluded. Chi2test was used for statistical analysis.
Results There were 226 male and 133 female patients with mean age of 70 years (Range: 21–93). Of the 359 rectal cancer patients, 149 (41.5%) had low and 210 (58.5%) had medium/high cancer. Outcome data of tumour height, neo-adjuvant therapy, CRM status, type and mode of surgery and disease relapse is tabulated in Table 1.
Conclusion Height of rectal cancer does influence use of neo-adjuvant therapy and ultimate R0 resection rate. It does not influence loco-regional or systemic recurrent rates.
Disclosure of interest None Declared.
Bhangu A, Rasheed S, Tekkis P, et al. Does rectal cancer height influence the oncological outcome? Colorectal Dis.2014;16:801808
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