Background: This study sought to analyze the morbidity and mortality rates after radical gastrectomy for carcinoma, since the operation has been criticized as too morbid for the benefits it may provide.
Study design: A prospective study of 474 patients who underwent radical gastrectomy was conducted.
Results: The overall morbidity and mortality rates were 20.1 and 3.0 percent, respectively. The morbidity and mortality rates fell significantly from 27.0 to 15.7 percent (p = 0.003) and 5.5 to 1.1 percent (p < 0.001), respectively, after the first 200 cases. By logistic regression analysis, it was found that male gender, combined organ(s) resection, extended lymphadenectomy, respiratory system disease, and tumor location were significantly related to postoperative morbidity. In regard to the extent of lymphadenectomy, relative to R2 resection (n = 102), the odds ratio for morbidity after R3 resection (n = 217) was 2.13, and for R4 resection (n = 155) it was 3.12. Age older than 65 years, total gastrectomy, combined organ(s) resection, and respiratory system disease were factors that negatively affected operative mortality.
Conclusions: These observations suggested that radical gastrectomy can be performed with an acceptable risk of morbidity and mortality in a general hospital.