Background: Esophagectomy for esophageal cancer is one of the most invasive operative procedures. Surgical stress induces the release of proinflammatory cytokines, and overproduction induces a systemic inflammatory response syndrome, which may lead to acute lung injury and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome. In addition, surgical stress may cause immunosuppression, which may affect not only perioperative mortality but also long-term survival.
Methods: Between 2006 and 2013, levels of perioperative serum cytokines were evaluated in 90 patients who underwent esophagectomy for esophageal carcinoma. The serum interleukin (IL)-6, IL-8, and IL-10 levels were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. We reviewed and assessed medical records, including cytokine profiles, and determined the factors affecting postoperative serum cytokine levels.
Results: These cytokine levels peaked on postoperative day 1 and decreased gradually. Of the clinicopathologic factors, a thoracoscopic approach was a significant factor in attenuating IL-6 and IL-8 levels on postoperative day 1 in multivariate analysis, and a longer operative time was a significant factor in increasing these levels. During postoperative days 3–7, the thoracoscopic approach and early enteral nutrition were significant factors in attenuating serum cytokine changes in multivariate analysis, and postoperative infectious complications were significant factors in increasing these levels.
Conclusions: The thoracoscopic approach and early enteral nutrition could attenuate the cytokine change after esophagectomy, and a longer operative time and postoperative infectious complication could increase it. We should undertake strategies to minimize the surgical stress to reduce potential short-term and long-term consequences for patients.
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