Purpose: Anastomotic leakage (AL) is one of the most serious complications of colorectal surgery. We investigated whether the large-calibre transanal drainage tube (LTDT) placement could reduce AL after anterior resection for rectal cancer.
Methods: We restrospectively analyzed 222 patients who underwent anterior resection at our institution. The patients were divided into the large-calibre transanal drainage tube (LTDT) and non-transanal drainage tube (NTDT) groups according to whether the large-calibre transanal drainage tube was placed in the operation. Clinical characteristics and postoperative complication were compared between the LTDT and NTDT groups.
Results: In the LTDT group, AL occurred in 0 patient, whereas it occurred in 9 patients in the NTDT group. The rate of AL was significantly lower in the LTDT group (0 vs. 6.6%; p=0.015). Eight cases of AL were treated conservatively. One case developed severe peritonitis and underwent re-operation receiving temporary stoma.No perioperative death occurred in this series.
Conclusions: The large-calibre transanal drainage tube effectively prevented the occurrence of anastomotic leakage after anterior resection for rectal cancer and increased the safety of the surgery.