Management of ascites after radical surgery in gastric cancer patients with liver cirrhosis and minimal hepatic dysfunction

World J Surg. 2005 May;29(5):653-6. doi: 10.1007/s00268-005-7715-2.


A radical lymph node dissection is important for the cure of gastric cancer. However, such a procedure in patients with liver cirrhosis (LC) could develop serious complications such as massive ascites. To determine the management of postoperative ascites, 26 gastric cancer patients with LC were reviewed retrospectively. Child-Pugh status was grade A in all 26 patients. Thirteen (50%) patients had advanced gastric cancer, and a D2 lymph nodes dissection was performed in 25 (96.2%) patients. The mean number of dissected lymph nodes was 33 +/- 11 (range: 11-54). An abdominal closed suction drain was placed in 12 (46.2%) patients, and the average amount of fluid drainage was 463 ml/day. The drainage tube was removed on about the eleventh postoperative day (range: day 6 to day 13), and diuretics were used in 8 (30.8%) patients. A paracentesis was needed in one patient but no postoperative surgical morbidity or mortality was observed. Therefore, an extended lymph node dissection is safe in gastric cancer patients with mild hepatic dysfunction. Liver cirrhosis and postoperative ascites can be managed conservatively without any complications.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Ascites / etiology
  • Ascites / surgery*
  • Drainage*
  • Female
  • Gastrectomy / methods*
  • Humans
  • Liver / physiopathology
  • Liver Cirrhosis / epidemiology*
  • Liver Cirrhosis / physiopathology
  • Lymph Node Excision* / adverse effects
  • Male
  • Postoperative Period
  • Stomach Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / physiopathology
  • Stomach Neoplasms / surgery*