Article of Interest: Management of intussusception in patients with melanoma

Perez MC, Sun J, Farley C, Han D, Sun AH, Narayan D, Lowe M, Delman KA, Messina JL, Gonzalez RJ, Sondak VK, Khushalani NI, Zager JS. Management of intussusception in patients with melanoma. J Surg Oncol. 2019 Jun;119(7):897-902.

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Background: Increased cross-sectional imaging for surveillance of metastatic melanoma has led to more diagnoses of asymptomatic intussusception.

Methods: We performed a multi-institutional retrospective review of patient records with a history of metastatic melanoma and a diagnosis of intussusception. Patients were divided into three groups: 1) asymptomatic patients without current evidence of melanoma (no evidence of disease [NED]); 2) asymptomatic intussusception and known active metastatic melanoma; 3) symptomatic intussusception and known active metastatic melanoma; the number of patients requiring surgery and intraoperative findings were recorded.

Results: We reviewed 73 patients diagnosed with intussusception from 2004 to 2017. Among asymptomatic patients with NED (n = 16), 14 spontaneously resolved and 2 underwent pre-emptive surgery without abnormal intraoperative findings. Of asymptomatic patients with active metastatic disease (n = 32), 25 were initially observed and 7 underwent pre-emptive surgery and 9 of the 25 initially observed patients required surgery for development of symptoms. In this group, all 16 patients undergoing surgery (50% of the group) had intraoperative findings of intussusception and/or metastatic intestinal melanoma.. All symptomatic patients with metastatic melanoma (n = 25) underwent surgery; all had intraoperative findings of intussusception and/or metastatic melanoma except 1 (Meckel’s diverticulum).

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The utility of intraoperative perfusion assessment during resection of colorectal cancer

De Nardi P, et al. Intraoperative angiography with indocyanine green to assess anastomosis perfusion in patients undergoing laparoscopic colorectal resection: results of a multicenter randomized controlled trial. Surg Endosc. 2020 Jan;34(1):53-60.

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Results: After randomization, 12 patients were excluded. Accordingly, 240 patients were included in the analysis; 118 were in the study group, and 122 in the control group. ICG angiography showed insufficient perfusion of the colic stump, which led to extended bowel resection in 13 cases (11%). An anastomotic leak developed in 11 patients (9%) in the control group and in 6 patients (5%) in the study group (p = n.s.).

Conclusions: Intraoperative ICG fluorescent angiography can effectively assess vascularization of the colic stump and anastomosis in patients undergoing colorectal resection. This method led to further proximal bowel resection in 13 cases, however, there was no statistically significant reduction of anastomotic leak rate in the ICG arm.

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For your review: Desmoplastic melanoma

Nicolson NG, Han D. Desmoplastic melanoma. J Surg Oncol. 2019 Jan;119(2):208-215. doi: 10.1002/jso.25317. Epub 2018 Nov 27.

Desmoplastic melanoma (DM) is a rare melanoma variant that has unique biology and pathology compared with conventional melanoma (non-DM). Importantly, DM is classified into pure and mixed histologic subtypes, which have been correlated with outcomes. Management of DM broadly mirrors that of non-DM; however, there are unique considerations for DM that influence treatment approaches. This paper will provide a contemporary overview of this disease and will review the literature regarding the management of DM.

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Article of interest: Spotlight on the utility of the Oncotype DX ® breast cancer assay.

Siow ZR, De Boer RH, Lindeman GJ, Mann GB. Spotlight on the utility of the Oncotype DX® breast cancer assay. Int J Womens Health. 2018 Feb 21;10:89-100.

Summary: Genomic assays such as Oncotype DX have changed the landscape for the treatment of ER-positive early breast cancer. In a USA-based study, there has been a 13% decline in the use of adjuvant chemotherapy in 2006–2008, which has been largely attributed to the introduction of the Oncotype DX in 2004.78 While the Oncotype DX is expensive, the potential cost savings from chemotherapy avoidance and reduced exposure to the side effects of cytotoxic therapy appear to be cost-effective in most jurisdictions. The development and eventual validation of other genomic assays could potentially reduce test costs. While Oncotype DX is currently well validated in the node-negative population, its optimal use remains to be defined for cohorts of patients with intermediate-risk RS, as well as for patients with lymph node-positive disease. Results from the prospective TAILORx and RxPONDER trials will help shed light on these questions.

Sentinel lymph node surgery after neoadjuvant chemotherapy in node-positive breast cancer

Cavalcante FP, Millen EC, Zerwes FP, Novita GG. Role of Axillary Surgery After Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy. JCO Glob Oncol. 2020 Feb;6:238-241.

“In a US study, associating selective localization and removal of clipped nodes with SLN dissection, known as targeted axillary dissection, reduced false-negative rates to approximately 2% compared with 4% with removal of the clipped lymph node alone. [20] However, patients are required to undergo two procedures: placement of the clip before systemic treatment and marking it to identify the lymph node during surgery. A retrospective analysis showed that in patients with clipped lymph nodes who were referred for preoperative marking, the clip failed to be identified in 20% of those patients, even when computed tomography was used, with the additional risk of the clip not being removed during surgery. [21] Therefore, the use of clips is controversial, because it is sometimes impossible to remove the clip alone. Despite the association between the number of lymph nodes and false-negative rates, there are still no convincing data regarding clinical outcome.”


Caudle AS, Yang WT, Krishnamurthy S, et al. Improved Axillary Evaluation Following Neoadjuvant Therapy for Patients With Node-Positive Breast Cancer Using Selective Evaluation of Clipped Nodes: Implementation of Targeted Axillary Dissection. J Clin Oncol. 2016 Apr 1;34(10):1072-8.

Results: Of 208 patients enrolled in this study, 191 underwent ALND, with residual disease identified in 120 (63%). The clipped node revealed metastases in 115 patients, resulting in an FNR of 4.2% (95% CI, 1.4 to 9.5) for the clipped node. In patients undergoing SLND and ALND (n = 118), the FNR was 10.1% (95% CI, 4.2 to 19.8), which included seven false-negative events in 69 patients with residual disease. Adding evaluation of the clipped node reduced the FNR to 1.4% (95% CI, 0.03 to 7.3; P = .03). The clipped node was not retrieved as an SLN in 23% (31 of 134) of patients, including six with negative SLNs but metastasis in the clipped node. TAD followed by ALND was performed in 85 patients, with an FNR of 2.0% (1 of 50; 95% CI, 0.05 to 10.7).

Conclusion: Marking nodes with biopsy-confirmed metastatic disease allows for selective removal and improves pathologic evaluation for residual nodal disease after chemotherapy.

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Total neoadjuvant therapy in rectal cancer

Petrelli F, et al. Total Neoadjuvant Therapy in Rectal Cancer: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Treatment Outcomes. Ann Surg. 2020 Mar;271(3):440-448.

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Results: A total of 28 studies (3 retrospective and 25 prospective for a total of 3579 patients) were included in the final analysis (n = 2688 treated with TNT and n = 891 with neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy therapy). The pooled pCR rate was 22.4% (95% CI 19.4%-25.7%) in all patients treated with TNT (n = 27 studies with data available). In n = 10 comparative studies with data available, TNT was found to increase the odds of pCR by 39% (1.40, 95% CI 1.08-1.81, P = 0.01).

Conclusions: The addition of induction or consolidation chemotherapy to standard neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy results in a higher pCR rate. Given that the comparative analysis was derived from few randomized publications, large confirmatory trials should be carried out before a strong recommendation is made in favor of TNT.

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Article of interest: The Landmark Series: MSLT-1, MSLT-2 and DeCOG (Management of Lymph Nodes)

Bello DM, Faries MB. The Landmark Series: MSLT-1, MSLT-2 and DeCOG (Management of Lymph Nodes). Ann Surg Oncol. 2020 Jan;27(1):15-21.

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Management of regional lymph nodes in patients with melanoma has evolved significantly in recent years. The value of nodal intervention, long utilized for its perceived therapeutic benefit, has now shifted to that of a critical prognostic procedure used to guide clinical decision making. This review focuses on the three landmark, randomized controlled trials evaluating the role of surgery for regional lymph nodes in melanoma: Multicenter Selective Lymphadenectomy Trial I (MSLT-I), German Dermatologic Cooperative Oncology Group-Selective Lymphadenectomy Trial (DeCOG-SLT), and Multicenter Selective Lymphadenectomy Trial II (MSLT-II).