Surgical technique of suprapancreatic D2 lymphadenectomy focusing on the posterior hepatic plexus for advanced gastric cancer

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Purpose: Although D2 lymphadenectomy is currently considered a standard procedure for advanced gastric cancer (GC) worldwide, there is room for discussion about the appropriate range of suprapancreatic D2 lymphadenectomy. Focusing on the posterior hepatic plexus (PHP), which is not well recognized, we developed a surgical technique of suprapancreatic D2 lymphadenectomy, which we have called PHP-D2, and its short-term and long-term efficacies were evaluated in comparison with non-PHP-D2. Methods: GC patients who underwent distal gastrectomy with D2 lymphadenectomy between July 2006 and May 2013 were enrolled, from which patients who had peritoneal metastasis and/or were peritoneal cytology-positive during surgery were excluded. Their medical records were retrospectively reviewed. Results: Ninety-two patients (non-PHP-D2: 48, PHP-D2: 44) were enrolled. Shorter operation time (330 min vs 275 min, p < 0.0001) and less blood loss (290 mL vs 125 mL, p < 0.0001) were observed in PHP-D2, and no pancreatic fistulas were observed in PHP-D2. More lymph nodes of #11p (1 vs 1.5, p = 0.0328) and #12a lymph nodes (0 vs 1, p = 0.0034) were retrieved in PHP-D2, with no significant differences in #8a and #9 lymph nodes. Lymphatic recurrence was significantly less in PHP-D2 (p = 0.0166), and univariate and multivariate analyses showed that non-PHP-D2 was a significant risk factor for lymphatic recurrence (p = 0.0158), although there were no significant differences between non-PHP-D2 and PHP-D2 in 5-year overall survival and 5-year relapse-free survival. Conclusion: PHP-D2 was a safe and feasible procedure that had the potential to reduce lymphatic recurrence, and it can be a standard procedure of D2 lymphadenectomy for advanced GC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)871-877
Number of pages7
JournalLangenbeck's Archives of Surgery
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022


  • D2 lymphadenectomy
  • Distal gastrectomy
  • Gastric cancer
  • Posterior hepatic plexus
  • Suprapancreatic lymphadenectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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