Background and aims: Recent results from long-term follow-up of a large number of patients who have undergone gastric resection for early gastric cancer (EGC) have not yet been fully evaluated.
Patients and methods: A total of 848 patients who had undergone gastric resection for EGC (262 female, 586 male; mean age 58.0 years; range 20-86 years) were studied with respect to surgical technique, long-term survival and prognostic factors on the basis of current TNM classification.
Results: Death related to recurrence occurred in only eight patients (0.9%). Hematogenous metastasis to the liver or bone represented the most common pattern of recurrence, developing in six of the eight recurrences (75%). The 5-year and 10-year cancer-related survival rates were 98.6% and 94.8%, respectively. The 5-year and 10-year overall survival rates were 95.2% and 85.0%, respectively. Lymph node metastasis represented an independent prognostic factor when analyzed on the basis of cancer-related survival.
Conclusion: The present findings indicate that long-term survival of patients who undergo gastric resection for EGC is extremely good and that lymph node metastasis represents an independent prognostic factor when analyzed according to cancer-related survival. Future developments for the treatment of EGC are expected to improve quality of life for patients after gastric resection.