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Original Article

Med Arch. 2022; 76(5): 363-367

Stapler Pharyngeal Repair Versus Conventional Suturing After Laryngectomy in Jordanian Laryngeal Cancer Patients

Wisam Algargaz, Issa Mohamad, Suhaib Eid, Asim Khanfa, Hassan Abushukair.


Background: The use of staplers in surgical repair of the pharynx after laryngectomy has gained traction in recent years, with differing results. Objective: In this study, we compare the use of stapler suturing (SS) after laryngectomy in comparison with the manual suturing (MS) technique in laryngeal cancer patients regarding pharyngocutaneous fistula (PCF) formation, operative time, blood loss, margin status, and length of hospital stay. Methods: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of laryngeal cancer patients undergoing pharyngeal repair after total laryngectomy by either a stapler or manual suturing. Demographic data, stage of disease, postoperative complications, duration of hospital stay, and operative time were collected. Results: A total of 59 laryngeal cancer patients were included, of which 22 underwent SS and 37 had MS. Our cohort was predominantly males (98%), and similar mean ages were observed across both suturing groups (60.5 vs 59.9, P = 0.83). Negative margins were more frequent with SS (100% vs 86.5%, P = 0.13) yet this difference was not statistically significant, whereas preoperative tracheostomy procedure was present more in MS patients (43.2% vs 0, P = 0.003). Lymph node involvement was higher in the manual suturing cohort, yet this difference was statistically insignificant (41.2% vs 25%, P = 0.49). The muscle flap procedure was significantly higher in the MS cohort (70.3% vs 20%, P = 0.001). In both groups, comparable PCF rates were noted (13.3% vs 10.8%) and there was no association between salvage laryngectomy and PCF occurrence in the entire cohort. For surgery details, there was no statistical difference between both groups in blood loss, hospitalization length, or oral feeding start. Only surgical time was significantly lower in the stapler cohort (277 vs 372.6 minutes, P = 0.000). Conclusion: Both suturing techniques did not show any statistically significant difference in PCF rates. However, was markedly reduced with stapler use in comparison to manual suturing. Further randomized studies with larger sample size are needed to validate the role of stapler suturing for pharyngeal repair.

Key words: Total laryngectomy, laryngeal cancer, stapler, pharyngocutaneous fistula, neopharynx.

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