Anastomotic leakage (AL) is one of the most troublesome complications in colorectal surgery. Recently, near-infrared fluorescence (NIRF) imaging has been used intraoperatively to detect sentinel lymph nodes and visualize the blood supply at the region of interest (ROI). The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of visualization and quantification of bowel perfusion around the anastomosis using NIRF system in predicting AL.


A prospective study was conducted on patients who had laparoscopic surgery for colorectal cancer at our institution. Perfusion of the anastomosis was evaluated with NIRF imaging after intravenous injection of indocyanine green (ICG). The time course of fluorescence intensity was recorded by an imaging analyzer We measured the time from ICG injection to the beginning of fluorescence (T0), maximum intensity (Imax), time to reach Imax (Tmax), time to reach Imax 50% (𝑇max1/2Tmax1/2) and slope (S) after the anastomosis.


Tumor locations were as follows; cecum: 2, ascending colon: 2, transverse colon: 7, descending colon: 1, sigmoid colon: 2, rectosigmoid colon: 3 and rectum: 6 (one case with synchronous cancer). All operations were performed laparoscopically. Four patients were diagnosed with or suspected to have AL (2 patients with grade B anastomotic leakage after low anterior resection, 1 patient with minor leakage in transverse colon resection and 1 patient needing re-anastomosis intraoperatively in transverse colon resection). T0 was significantly longer in the AL group than in patients without AL (64.3 ± 27.6 and 18.2 ± 6.6 s, p = 2.2 × 10−3).


Perfusion of the anastomosis could be successfully visualized and quantified using NIRF imaging with ICG. T0 might be a useful parameter for prediction of AL.

Released: December 31st, 2019 02:38 PM

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