JOURNAL ARTICLE

Risk factors for post-operative pulmonary complications after gastrectomy for gastric cancer

Mikito Inokuchi, Kazuyuki Kojima, Keiji Kato, Hirofumi Sugita, Kenichi Sugihara
Surgical Infections 2014, 15 (3): 314-21
24796353

BACKGROUND: Post-operative pulmonary complications (PPCs) negatively affect patients' quality of life and can be life-threatening. Predictors of PPCs have been evaluated in patients who underwent various operations, but few studies have specifically focused on gastrectomy.

METHODS: We retrospectively studied 1,053 patients with gastric adenocarcinoma who underwent radical gastrectomy with lymphadenectomy in our hospital between 1999 and 2011. Post-operative pulmonary complications were defined as conditions such as pneumonia, macroscopic atelectasis, pneumothorax, and acute respiratory distress syndrome that developed within 30 d after surgery. We evaluated the relations between PPCs and pre-operative or intra-operative factors and assessed risk factors for PPCs after gastrectomy.

RESULT: A total of 49 (4.7%) patients had PPCs. On univariate analysis, PPCs were significantly associated with male gender (p=0.024), predicted vital capacity (VC) (p=0.020), a lower pre-operative serum albumin concentration (p=0.023), open surgery (p=0.007), total gastrectomy (p<0.001), combined resection of another organ (p=0.001), extended operating time (p<0.001), higher operative bleeding volume (p<0.001), intra-operative or post-operative blood transfusion (p=0.009), and pathologic tumor stage (p=0.003). On multivariable analysis, extended operating time (odds ratio [OR], 3.21, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.46-7.07; p=0.004), total gastrectomy (OR, 2.65, 95% CI 1.25-5.59; p=0.011) and predicted VC (OR, 2.42, 95% CI 1.01-5.85; p=0.049) were independent risk factors. These three factors also were independent risk factors for post-operative pneumonia (total gastrectomy OR, 2.64, 95% CI 1.32-5.30; p=0.006); extended operating time OR, 2.54, 95% CI 1.24-5.19; p=0.011; and predicted VC OR, 2.41, 95% CI 1.01-5.75; p=0.048).

CONCLUSION: Extended operating time, total gastrectomy, and predicted VC were independent predictors of PPCs, particularly pneumonia, in patients with gastric cancer who underwent gastrectomy. In patients with restrictive pulmonary dysfunction who are scheduled to undergo total gastrectomy, reduced lymphadenectomy or the avoidance of combined resection should be considered to shorten the operating time.

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