Aim: This study aimed to compare the clinical outcome between local excision (LE) and total mesorectal excision (TME) for early rectal cancer. Method: After Institutional Review Board approval, charts of patients with T1 or T2 N0M0 rectal adenocarcinoma treated by curative LE or TME without preoperative radiotherapy from 2004 to 2012 were reviewed. Categorical and continuous variables were compared using chi-square analysis and the ANOVA test. Kaplan-Meier analysis compared survival rates. Results: The study included 153 patients: 79 underwent TME and 74 LE. Postoperative infection was more common after TME (P = 0.009). There was tumour involvement of the margins in 13.5% after LE compared with 0% after TME (P = 0.001). Of the patients treated initially by LE, 13.5% had additional surgery for unfavourable histological findings and 4.1% had residual tumour. Median follow up was 35 (17-96) months. No deaths were recorded in 56 patients with a pT1 lesion. There was no significant difference in local recurrence (P = 0.332) or 3-year disease-free survival (DFS; P = 0.232) between patients having LE or TME. The 68 patients with a T2 lesion had higher local recurrence (P = 0.025) and lower DFS following LE compared with TME (P = 0.044). There was no difference in overall survival (P = 0.351). Conclusion: LE of early rectal cancer is associated with higher local recurrence and decreased DFS. These disadvantages are significant for T2 lesions.
- Early rectal cancer
- Local excision
- Total mesorectal excision
- Transanal endoscopic microsurgery
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