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Posted by on Aug 28, 2019 in Colorectal cancer | 0 comments

In a nutshell

This study compared abdominal (stomach/intestinal) symptoms (AS) between patients with colorectal cancer after colon surgery and after rectal surgery. Researchers suggested that complaints between both groups of patients are similar.

Some background

Colorectal cancer survivors often have long-term side effects from the cancer and its treatments (60 to 90%). These symptoms can be AS, depression, tiredness that may last for several years. Patients who have surgery for rectal cancer experience more often a side effect called low anterior resection syndrome (LARS). This involves AS such as abdominal pain, gas, losing control of bowel movements or urgency of stools. This can affect the quality of life of these patients such as physical and social functioning.

However, the occurrence and frequency of LARS after colon surgery have not been investigated.

Methods & findings

This study included information about 1495 patients with colorectal cancer who underwent surgery. Of these, 1145 had a colon cancer and 350 a rectal cancer. 55% of the patients in the rectal surgery group and 21% in the colon surgery group had LARS.

Female patients were 1.88 times more at risk of having LARS after colon surgery. Patients with a diverting stoma (an opening in the intestine that is brought out onto the surface of the belly) were 1.84 times more at risk of having LARS after surgery.  

Patients with LARS after colon surgery had significantly worse quality of life.

The bottom line

This study concluded that patients who receive surgery for colon cancer report the same poor quality of life associated with LARS as patients treated for rectal cancer.

The fine print

The groups of patients were not equal. This might limit the findings of this study. Further studies are needed for methods to improve the quality of life of these patients.

Published By :

Colorectal Disease

Date :

Aug 10, 2019

Original Title :

Functional bowel complaints and quality of life after surgery for colon cancer: prevalence and predictive factors.

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