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New minimally invasive surgery option for patients with stomach cancer
Date:4/15/2009

A novel, minimally invasive surgical approach to treat stomach cancer has been shown to have advantages that may make it a preferable treatment for some patients.

A new study led by researchers at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) compares traditional "open" surgery to remove the stomach with laparoscopic gastrectomy a minimally invasive procedure in which the surgeon removes the stomach while guided by a magnified image projected by a thin, lighted tube with a video camera at its tip, called a laparoscope. The findings demonstrate that while laparoscopic surgeries generally took longer to perform than open procedures, the minimally invasive approach yielded shorter hospital stays, decreased need for postoperative pain relief, fewer complications after surgery, and similar rates of recurrence-free survival after 36 months of follow-up.

"Our number one goal in treating patients with stomach cancer is to remove the cancer completely and safely, while preserving his or her quality of life," says the study's lead author Vivian E. Strong, MD, a surgeon at MSKCC who specializes in laparoscopic surgery for the treatment of stomach cancer, also known as gastric cancer. "Laparoscopic gastrectomy is an excellent option for certain patients with the disease, and for those patients, this approach has the same success rate as standard open surgery, with significantly fewer complications."

Published online in the Annals of Surgical Oncology, the paper describes the largest US study of laparoscopic gastrectomy to date and demonstrates both the safety and efficacy of the procedure. The study examined the surgical characteristics and oncologic outcomes of 30 patients who underwent laparoscopic gastrectomy and compared them to 30 patients who had open gastrectomies. The patients in each group were matched for cancer stage, age, and gender, and had their surgeries during the same time period.

In addition to the benefits seen among the p
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Contact: Esther Napolitano
napolite@mskcc.org
212-639-3573
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
Source:Eurekalert

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