Prospective Evaluation of the Quality of Life of Patients after Surgical Treatment of Rectal Cancer: A 12-Month Cohort Observation

J Clin Med. 2022 Oct 7;11(19):5912. doi: 10.3390/jcm11195912.


This study constitutes a prospective, three-stage evaluation of quality of life among patients receiving surgical treatment for colorectal cancer depending on the type of surgery performed (open anterior resection, laparoscopic anterior resection, abdominoperineal resection, or Hartmann’s procedure). The study included 82 patients treated at the Surgical Oncology Outpatient Department of the Oncology Center in Bydgoszcz from June 2019 to August 2021. The study tools consisted of diagnostic surveys and analyses of medical records. The standardized study tools were the surveys EORTC QLQ-C30 and QLQ-CR29. In addition, a proprietary questionnaire was developed to collect demographic data. Quality of life was measured at three time-points: the day before the surgery and 6 and 12 months post-surgery. Statistically significant differences (p < 0.05) were observed in the domains of role functioning (III, p = 0.030), body image (II, p < 0.001; III, p < 0.001), sexual functioning (II, p = 0.037), buttocks/anal area/rectum pain (III, p = 0.031), and embarrassment (II, p = 0.022; III, p = 0.010). Statistically significant differences in the functional and symptom scale scores were also observed within each group at different stages of cancer treatment. As shown by our study, the quality of life of patients treated for colorectal cancer is determined not only by the operating technique but also by sociodemographic and clinical factors. The use of minimally invasive surgical techniques enables patients to return to their social roles more quickly and improves their self-assessment of body image.

Keywords: colorectal cancer; conventional surgeries; laparoscopy; quality of life.

Grants and funding

This research received no external funding.