This study was performed to investigate the efficacy of the modified Collard (MC) technique for reducing anastomotic stricture after esophagectomy compared with the circular stapled (CS) technique.
The currently available techniques of anastomosis after esophagectomy are associated with a significant risk of anastomotic complications. However, the optimal anastomotic technique after esophagectomy has not yet been established.
We randomly allocated patients to either the CS group or the MC group. The primary endpoint was the incidence of anastomotic stricture. The secondary endpoints included the incidence of postoperative complications (including anastomotic leakage) and quality of life (QOL). All anastomoses were performed after indocyanine green evaluation for objective homogenization of blood flow to the gastric conduit between the two techniques.
Among 100 randomized patients (CS group, n = 50; MC group, n = 50), anastomotic strictures were observed in 18 (42%) patients in the CS group and in no patients in the MC group. There were no significant between-group differences in anastomotic leakage (CS group, 7% vs. MC group, 8%; p = 0.94). QOL domains of dysphagia and choking when swallowing at 3 months after surgery were significantly better in the MC group than in the CS group.
The MC technique reduces the incidence of anastomotic stricture and improves postoperative QOL. Furthermore, the incidence of anastomotic leakage is comparable between the two techniques based on accurate comparison under objective homogenization of the gastric conduit condition.

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