JOURNAL ARTICLE

Transanal endoscopic microsurgery for rectal tumors: experience at Korea's National Cancer Center

Woon Kyung Jeong, Ji Won Park, Hyo Seong Choi, Hee Jin Chang, Seung-Yong Jeong
Surgical Endoscopy 2009, 23 (11): 2575-9
19347399

BACKGROUND: Transanal endoscopic microsurgery (TEM) is a minimally invasive alternative to transanal excision, enabling complete local excision of selected benign or malignant rectal tumors. This study aimed to determine the surgical and oncologic results for rectal tumors excised by TEM.

METHODS: From November 2001 to October 2007, 45 patients underwent TEM for excision of adenoma (13 patients), carcinoid tumor (6 patients), and carcinoma (26 patients). The patients included 27 men and 18 women with a median age of 52 years (range, 22-72 years).

RESULTS: The median tumor distance from the anal verge was 7 cm (range, 3-15 cm), and the median tumor size was 17 mm (range, 2-60 mm). There was no procedure-related morbidity or mortality. However, one patient with rectal carcinoma died of lung cancer during the follow-up period. Of 13 patients with adenomas, 1 patient (7.7%, 1/13) experienced local recurrence 5 months after surgery. No recurrence occurred for six patients with carcinoid tumors. Histologic examination of the carcinomas showed pathologic tumor (pT) stage 0 (ypT0) in 2 patients, pT1 in 17 patients (including ypT1 in 1 patient), pT2 in 6 patients, and pT3 in 1 patient. Immediate salvage surgery was performed for five patients (19%, 5/26). During a median follow-up period of 37 months (range, 5-72 months), one patient (3.8%, 1/26) experienced local recurrence. The overall and disease-free 5-year survival rates for patients with carcinoma were 96.2% and 88.5%, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS: The TEM procedure is a safe and appropriate surgical treatment option for benign rectal tumors. With strict patient selection, it is oncologically safe for early-stage rectal carcinomas.

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