A feasibility study of mediastinoscopic radical esophagectomy for thoracic esophageal cancer from the viewpoint of the dissected mediastinal lymph nodes validated with thoracoscopic procedure: a prospective clinical trial
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A prospective trial evaluated the feasibility and safety of “mediastinoscopic esophagectomy with lymph node dissection” (MELD).
Eligible patients had thoracic esophageal squamous cell carcinoma, excluding T4, a bulky primary lesion or distant metastasis. Ten patients were enrolled and treated between September 2015 and March 2018. Additionally, to verify the integrity of the mediastinal lymph node dissection, thoracoscopic observation and lymph node dissection were followed. The primary end point was the integrity of mediastinal lymph node dissection. The secondary end points were the short-term outcomes, including mortality and morbidity.
The median number of dissected lymph nodes in the upper mediastinal to cervical region and middle to lower mediastinal region by mediastinoscopy/thoracoscopy was 27/0.5 and 11.5/0, respectively. The median total operation time was 615 min, the median bleeding amount was 476 ml, and the median postoperative hospital stay was 15.5 days. Regarding complications of more than grade III according to the Clavien–Dindo classification, four had sputum excretion difficulty, one had pneumothorax and one had bilateral recurrent nerve palsy, but none required conversion to thoracotomy, and no operative deaths occurred.
Although the rate of recurrent nerve palsy still should be reduced, our mediastinoscopic lymphadenectomy technique is closely similar to radical esophagectomy.
KeywordsMediastinoscopy Pneumomediastinum Esophagectomy Esophageal cancer Minimally invasive esophagectomy
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
All authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.
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