Background: An audit of all patients with rectal cancer in Sweden was launched in 1995. This is the first report from the Swedish Rectal Cancer Registry (SRCR).
Methods: Between 1995 and 2003, 13 434 patients treated for adenocarcinoma of the rectum were registered with the SRCR; there were approximately 1500 new patients annually.
Results: Approximately half had an anterior resection, a quarter an abdominoperineal resection and 15 per cent a Hartmann's procedure. The median 30-day postoperative mortality rate was 2.4 per cent and the overall postoperative morbidity rate was 35.0 per cent. The 5-year cancer-specific survival rate was 62.3 per cent. The 5-year relative survival rate was 70.1 per cent after anterior resection, 59.8 per cent after abdominoperineal resection and 39.8 per cent after a Hartmann's procedure. The crude 5-year local recurrence rate was 9.5 per cent overall, 6.1 per cent after preoperative radiotherapy and 11.4 per cent after surgery alone. For 3868 patients who had a locally curative procedure the local recurrence rate was 7.4 per cent overall, 5.9 per cent for those who had radiotherapy and 10.2 per cent for those who did not. The local recurrence rate was 2.9 per cent (28 of 968) for stage I disease, 7.9 per cent (112 of 1418) for stage II, 13.9 per cent (188 of 1357) for stage III and 8.5 per cent (45 of 532) for stage IV.
Conclusion: These good population-based results are due, in part, to the nationwide prospective quality assurance registration.
Copyright (c) 2007 British Journal of Surgery Society Ltd.