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ABSTRACT: To investigate the treatment of postoperative chyle leak after surgery for digestive malignancies.
From December 2008 to February 2012, in the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University, clinical data of 19 patients with chyle leak after digestive system cancer surgery were retrospective analyzed.
Nineteen cases of chyle leak were all identified between the second and the fourth postoperative day and were all initially managed with conservative treatment including early fasting, parenteral nutrition(PN), 24-hour continuous infusion of somatostatin, and low pressure suction drainage. Eight patients were treated successfully for 6 to 10 days with a significant reduction of the daily drainage volume. Ten patients had enteral nutrition(EN) and their drain tubes were repeatedly washed with 30 ml of compound meglumine diatrizoate injection every day until the drainage volume decreased to 200 ml/day. The time to resolution of chyle leak in these ten patients ranged from 12 to 24 days. One patient had no significant decrease in fluid drainage and developed abdominal distension after one week of conservative treatment. Surgical closure of chyle leak was performed on the 11th postoperative day, abdominal cavity drainage tube was removed on the 4th postoperative day. The patient was discharged home in good condition.
Most postoperative chyle leak after surgery for digestive malignancies can be successfully managed with conservative treatment. Somatostatin and the drainage are the main therapeutic approaches. When chyle leak is not resolved with conservative treatment, surgical treatment should be considered to prevent serious complications.
Zhonghua wei chang wai ke za zhi = Chinese journal of gastrointestinal surgery 04/2012; 15(4):360-2.