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How safe is Oesophagectomy?

Q: I am suffering from carcinoma oesophagus. I have been advised Oesophagectomy with three field dissection. Can this be cured by radiotherapy? How serious is this operation and what is the life span after surgery? Since it is a three field dissection and being a surgery patient will this heal fast? My blood sugar level is 130 mg (random). The doctor said there is risk to my life in the surgery. Please suggest.

A:Surgery and radiation (preferably with chemotherapy) therapy are two standard form of treatment for localised cancer of the oesophagus. At the present time, based on available evidence, surgery is the preferred treatment provided there are no medical contraindications and patient is willing for surgery. Oesophagectomy and three field lymph node dissection is accepted surgical approach. Its a supra major operation and in experienced hand the operative mortality should be under 5%. The life span after surgery(or radiation) will depend on the stage of the disease. Most recurrences occur within the first two years.


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