Delaying colon cancer surgery does not impact survival rate — 4 key notes

A study, published in Diseases of The Colon and Rectum, examined how waiting for surgery impacted survival rate in stage I to stage III colon cancer patients.

Kerollos Wanis, MD, of Ontario, Canada-based Western University, and colleagues conducted a cohort analysis of 908 colon cancer patients between 2006 and 2015 using a database. All patients underwent elective surgery for colon cancer. Researchers examined how a prolonged wait delay would impact disease-free and overall survival rates.

Here's what they found:

1. Patients waited a median treatment time of 38 days.

2. Exactly 368 patients were treated within 30 days, while 540 were treated more than 30 days from initial diagnosis.

3. Delaying treatment greater than 30 days did not impact disease-free survival or overall survival rates.

4. Researchers performed a subgroup analysis using treatment delay cutoffs of 60 days and 90 days. In both instances, there was no adverse effect on survival rate.

Researchers concluded, "Despite longer median treatment wait times from diagnosis to surgery, with the majority of patients exceeding 30 days and many experiencing delays of two to three months, no adverse impact on survival was observed. Patients who require additional consultations or investigations preoperatively may safely have their surgery moderately delayed to minimize their perioperative risk without any evidence that this will compromise treatment outcomes."

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