INTRODUCTION: Oesophageal cancer is the eighth most common cause of cancer worldwide. In 2009 in China, the incidence and death rate of oesophageal cancer was 22.14 per 100 000 person-years and 16.77 per 100 000 person-years, respectively, the highest in the world. Minimally invasive oesophagectomy (MIO) was introduced into clinical practice with the aim of reducing the morbidity rate. The mechanisms of MIO may lie in minimising the reaction to surgical injury and inflammation. There are some randomised trials regarding minimally invasive versus open oesophagectomy, with 100-850 subjects enrolled. To date, no large randomised controlled trial comparing minimally invasive versus open oesophagectomy has been reported in China, where squamous cell carcinoma predominated over adenocarcinoma of the oesophagus. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: This is a 3 year multicentre, prospective, randomised, open and parallel controlled trial, which aims to compare the effectiveness of minimally invasive thoraco-laparoscopic oesophagectomy to open three-stage transthoracic oesophagectomy for resectable oesophageal cancer. Group A patients receive MIO which involves thoracoscopic oesophagectomy and laparoscopic gastric mobilisation with cervical anastomosis. Group B patients receive the open three-stage transthoracic oesophagectomy which involves a right thoracotomy and laparotomy with cervical anastomosis. Primary endpoints include respiratory complications within 30 days after operation. The secondary endpoints include other postoperative complications, influences on pulmonary function, intraoperative data including blood loss, operative time, the number and location of lymph nodes dissected, and mortality in hospital, the length of hospital stay, total expenses in hospital, mortality within 30 days, survival rate after 2 years, postoperative pain, and health-related quality of life (HRQoL). Three hundred and twenty-four patients in each group will be needed and a total of 648 patients will finally be enrolled into the study. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: The study protocol has been approved by the Institutional Ethics Committees of all participating institutions. The findings of this trial will be disseminated to patients and through peer-reviewed publications and international presentations. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: NCT02355249.
Mu, J., Gao, S., Mao, Y., Xue, Q., Yuan, Z., Li, N., … He, J. (2015). Open three-stage transthoracic oesophagectomy versus minimally invasive thoraco-laparoscopic oesophagectomy for oesophageal cancer: protocol for a multicentre prospective, open and parallel, randomised controlled trial. BMJ Open, 5(11), e008328. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2015-008328