International journal of colorectal disease vol:9 issue:2 pages:73-6
A consecutive series of restorative proctocolectomy for ulcerative colitis was reviewed to determine whether an emergency restorative proctocolectomy procedure leads to a higher morbidity, more especially anastomotic leakage. Severity of illness and nature of surgery were divided in two categories: (1) no acute disease and elective surgery (18 patients), (2) acute disease requiring emergency surgery either immediately or within one week of admission (12 patients). Morbidity after elective surgery was 27% and after emergency surgery 66% (P < 0.06). Pouch-anal leakage occurred in 11% and 41% respectively (P = 0.08). Five risk factors significantly influenced the leak rate including preoperative white blood cell count > 10,000/microliter (P < 0.02), urgent nature of surgery (P < 0.02), the combination of leucocytosis and urgent nature of surgery (P = 0.02), the combination of leucocytosis and preoperative corticosteroid dose equivalent to > or = 200 mg hydrocortisone/24 h (P = 0.006), postoperative pelvic haematoma (P < 0.05). In conclusion, restorative proctocolectomy is contraindicated in emergency circumstances, especially in patients with signs of sepsis on a high corticosteroid dose. To reduce operative risk and number of procedures required, patients with relapsing ulcerative colitis should be referred for restorative proctocolectomy while being in remission.