Background: Low rectal tumors are often treated with sphincter-preserving resection followed by coloanal anastomosis.
Objective: The purpose of this study was to compare the short-term complications following straight coloanal anastomosis vs colonic J-pouch anal anastomosis.
Design: Patients were identified who underwent proctectomy for rectal neoplasia followed by coloanal anastomosis in the 2008 to 2013 American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database. Demographic characteristics and 30-day postoperative complications were compared between groups.
Settings: A national sample was extracted from the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Project database.
Patients: Inpatients following proctectomy and coloanal anastomosis for rectal cancer were selected.
Main outcome measures: Demographic characteristics and 30-day postoperative complications were compared between the 2 groups.
Results: One thousand three hundred seventy patients were included, 624 in the straight anastomosis group and 746 in the colonic J-pouch group. Preoperative characteristics were similar between groups, with the exception of preoperative radiation therapy (straight anastomosis 35% vs colonic J-pouch 48%, p = 0.0004). Univariate analysis demonstrated that deep surgical site infection (3.7% vs 1.4%, p = 0.01), septic shock (2.25% vs 0.8%, p = 0.04), and return to the operating room (8.8% vs 5.0%, p = 0.0006) were more frequent in the straight anastomosis group vs the colonic J-pouch group. Major complications were also higher (23% vs 14%, p = 0.0001) and length of stay was longer in the straight anastomosis group vs the colonic J-pouch group (8.9 days vs 8.1 days, p = 0.02). After adjusting for covariates, major complications were less following colonic J-pouch vs straight anastomosis (OR, 0.57; CI, 0.38-0.84; p = 0.005). Subgroup analysis of patients who received preoperative radiation therapy demonstrated no difference in major complications between groups.
Limitations: This study had those limitations inherent to a retrospective study using an inpatient database.
Conclusion: Postoperative complications were less following colonic J-pouch anastomosis vs straight anastomosis. Patients who received preoperative radiation had similar rates of complications, regardless of the reconstructive technique used following low anterior resection. See Video Abstract at http://links.lww.com/DCR/A468.