Long-term assessment of anorectal function after extensive resection of the internal anal sphincter for treatment of low-lying rectal cancer near the anus


Hiroyuki Shiokawa1), Kimihiko Funahashi1), Hironori Kaneko1), Tatsuo Teramoto2)

1) Department of General and Gastroenterological Surgery, Toho University Medical Center, Omori Hospital, Tokyo, Japan
2) Department of Surgery, Jujyo Hospital, Chiba, Japan


Objectives: Intersphincteric resection (ISR) for low-lying rectal cancer (LRC) may induce major problems associated with anorectal function. In this study, we assessed the severity of ISR-induced impairment in anorectal function. Methods: In total, 45 patients followed up regularly ≥2 years after diverting ileostoma closure were eligible. The patients underwent ISR (n=35) or conventional coloanal anastomosis without resection of the internal anal sphincter (IAS) (n=10) for treatment of LRC from January 2000 to December 2011. We retrospectively compared anorectal function [stool frequency, urgency, Wexner incontinence scale (WIS) score, and patient satisfaction with bowel movement habits on a visual analog scale (VAS) score] for ≥2 years after stoma closure between the two groups. Results: The median follow-up period was 4.0 years (range, 2.0-6.5 years). Of the total, 17 (48.6%) patients who underwent ISR had poor anorectal function, including two with complete incontinence. Significant differences were found between the groups in the incidence of urgency (p=0.042), WIS score (p=0.024), and defecation disorder with a WIS score of ≥10 (p=0.034) but not in stool frequency. Based on the VAS score, 45.7% of patients who underwent ISR were dissatisfied with their bowel movement habits (p=0.041). Conclusions: Extensive resection of the IAS has negative short- and long-term effects on anorectal function.

Released: January 27, 2017; doi: dx.doi.org/10.23922/jarc.2016-002