Feasibility and Safety of Tailored Lymphadenectomy Using Sentinel Node-Navigated Surgery in Patients with High-Risk T1 Esophageal Adenocarcinoma

Charlotte N. Frederiks, Anouk Overwater, Jacques J. G. H. M. Bergman, Roos E. Pouw, Bart de Keizer, Roel J. Bennink, Lodewijk A. A. Brosens, Sybren L. Meijer, Richard van Hillegersberg, Mark I. van Berge Henegouwen, Jelle P. Ruurda, Suzanne S. Gisbertz, Bas L. A. M. Weusten*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: Selective lymphadenectomy using sentinel node-navigated surgery (SNNS) might offer a less invasive alternative to esophagectomy in patients with high-risk T1 esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC). The aim of this study was to evaluate the feasibility and safety of a new treatment strategy, consisting of radical endoscopic resection of the tumor followed by SNNS. Methods: In this multicenter pilot study, ten patients with a radically resected high-risk pT1cN0 EAC underwent SNNS. A hybrid tracer of technetium-99m nanocolloid and indocyanine green was injected endoscopically around the resection scar the day before surgery, followed by preoperative imaging. During surgery, sentinel nodes (SNs) were identified using a thoracolaparoscopic gammaprobe and fluorescence-based detection, and subsequently resected. Endpoints were surgical morbidity and number of detected and resected (tumor-positive) SNs. Results: Localization and dissection of SNs was feasible in all ten patients (median 3 SNs per patient, range 1–6). The concordance between preoperative imaging and intraoperative detection was high. In one patient (10%), dissection was considered incomplete after two SNs were not identified intraoperatively. Additional peritumoral SNs were resected in four patients (40%) after fluorescence-based detection. In two patients (20%), a (micro)metastasis was found in one of the resected SNs. One patient experienced neuropathic thoracic pain related to surgery, while none of the patients developed functional gastroesophageal disorders. Conclusions: SNNS appears to be a feasible and safe instrument to tailor lymphadenectomy in patients with high-risk T1 EAC. Future research with long-term follow-up is warranted to determine whether this esophageal preserving strategy is justified for high-risk T1 EAC.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAnnals of Surgical Oncology
Early online date2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2023

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