ABSTRACT: If curation is intended for rectal cancer, total mesorectal excision with autonomic nerve preservation (TME) is the gold standard. Transanal resection is tempting because of low mortality and morbidity rates. However, inferior tumour control, provoked by the limitations of the technique, resulted in its cautious application and use mainly for palliation. Transanal endoscopic microsurgery (TEM) is a minimal invasive technique for the local resection of rectal tumours. It is a one-port system, introduced transanally. An optical system with a 3D-view, 6-fold magnification and resolution as the human eye, together with the creation of a stabile pneumorectum, and specially designed instruments allow full-thickness excision under excellent view and a proper histological examination. The technique can also be applied for larger and more proximal tumours. Mortality, morbidity as well as incomplete excision rates are minimal. Local recurrence and survival rates seem comparable to TME in early rectal cancer. TEM is the method of choice when local resection of rectal cancer is indicated. Results justify a re-evaluation of the indications for the local excision of rectal cancer with a curative intent.
European Journal of Cancer 06/2002; 38(7):904-10. · 5.54 Impact Factor