Aim: To evaluate the outcome of stapled versus sutured colo-rectal anastomosis after low anterior resection of mid-rectal carcinoma. Patients and
Methods: A prospective study of fifty patients who underwent colo-rectal anastomosis following low anterior resection (LAR) of T2 mid-rectal cancers at the Egyptian National Cancer Institute during the time period from June 2010 to June 2013 was conducted. Classification was into two groups; a stapled anastomosis group I (25 patients) and a hand-sewn anastomosis group II (25 patients). All operationsare evaluated regarding intra-operative complications such as anastomotic line bleeding, visceral injuries or major blood loss. The anastomotic time and operative time are documented for each operation. All patients are evaluated post-operatively for anastomotic leakage (AL), wound infection and ileus.
Results: The distance of the tumor from the anal verge was 9.6±2.0 cm in group I and 9.9±2.4 cm in group II. The mean operative time was 191.5±16.2 min in the stapled group and 208±18.6 min in the sutured group (p=0.002). The mean anastomotic times were 9.0±1.9 min and 19.7±12.2 min (p=0.001). Anastomotic leakage developed in three (12.0%) patients in the stapled group and in four (16.0%) patients in the sutured group (p=1.000). Post-operative ileus was observed in 3 patients in group I and one patient in group II. Wound infection developed in three (12.0%) patients in the stapled group and four (16.0%) patients in the sutured group (p=1.000).
Conclusion: Colo-rectal anastomosis after low anterior resection for mid rectal carcinoma can be conducted safely either by stapling or hand-sewn techniques; however the stapling technique showed shorter anastomotic and operative times with no significant advantages regarding intra- or post-operative complications or hospital stay.