alexa Management of late complications of pelvic radiation in the rectum and anus: a review.
Diabetes & Endocrinology

Diabetes & Endocrinology

Pancreatic Disorders & Therapy

Author(s): Johnston MJ, Robertson GM, Frizelle FA

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Abstract PURPOSE: Radiotherapy has become one of the most important treatment modalities for human malignancy. Tumors affecting the organs of the pelvis are increasingly being irradiated for local treatment benefit, with the subsequent complication of anorectal injury of varying extent. The aim of this review is to determine how to manage the consequences of long-term effects of radiotherapy on the rectum and anus. METHODS: A comprehensive search of the literature with manual cross-referencing was performed using the MEDLINE, PubMed, and Cochrane Databases. RESULTS: Long-term manifestations of injury caused by pelvic radiotherapy include abscess and fistula formation, stricture, mucus discharge, urgency, tenesmus, diarrhea, increased risk of cancer, and most commonly, bleeding. Most patients present with several symptoms; however, usually one symptom dominates. CONCLUSIONS: Many of these symptoms are self-limiting, and mucosal complications may often be treated by nonsurgical methods such as topical formalin application, endoscopic argon plasma coagulation, and hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Conservative measures have not been shown to be of benefit if symptoms persist. Structural abnormalities and septic complications are likely to require surgery. Modern techniques in the delivery of radiotherapy help minimize the likelihood of rectal complications. This article was published in Dis Colon Rectum and referenced in Pancreatic Disorders & Therapy

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