All Publications


  • Impact of COVID-19 on presentation, management, and outcomes of acute care surgery for gallbladder disease and acute appendicitis. World journal of gastrointestinal surgery Farber, O. N., Gomez, G. I., Titan, A. L., Fisher, A. T., Puntasecca, C. J., Arana, V. T., Kempinsky, A., Wise, C. E., Bessoff, K. E., Hawn, M. T., Korndorffer, J. R., Forrester, J. D., Esquivel, M. M. 2021; 13 (8): 859-870

    Abstract

    The ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has significantly disrupted both elective and acute medical care. Data from the early months suggest that acute care patient populations deferred presenting to the emergency department (ED), portending more severe disease at the time of presentation. Additionally, care for this patient population trended towards initial non-operative management.To examine the presentation, management, and outcomes of patients who developed gallbladder disease or appendicitis during the pandemic.A retrospective chart review of patients diagnosed with acute cholecystitis, symptomatic cholelithiasis, or appendicitis in two EDs affiliated with a single tertiary academic medical center in Northern California between March and June, 2020 and in the same months of 2019. Patients were selected through a research repository using international classification of diseases (ICD)-9 and ICD-10 codes. Across both years, 313 patients were identified with either type of gallbladder disease, while 361 patients were identified with acute appendicitis. The primary outcome was overall incidence of disease. Secondary outcomes included presentation, management, complications, and 30-d re-presentation rates. Relationships between different variables were explored using Pearson's r correlation coefficient. Variables were compared using the Welch's t-Test, Chi-squared tests, and Fisher's exact test as appropriate.Patients with gallbladder disease and appendicitis both had more severe presentations in 2020. With respect to gallbladder disease, more patients in the COVID-19 cohort presented with acute cholecystitis compared to the control cohort [50% (80) vs 35% (53); P = 0.01]. Patients also presented with more severe cholecystitis in 2020 as indicated by higher mean Tokyo Criteria Scores [mean (SD) 1.39 (0.56) vs 1.16 (0.44); P = 0.02]. With respect to appendicitis, more patients were diagnosed with a perforated appendix at presentation in 2020 [20% (36) vs 16% (29); P = 0.02] and a greater percentage were classified as emergent cases using the emergency severity index [63% (112) vs 13% (23); P < 0.001]. While a greater percentage of patients were admitted to the hospital for gallbladder disease in 2020 [65% (104) vs 50% (76); P = 0.02], no significant differences were observed in hospital admissions for patients with appendicitis. No significant differences were observed in length of hospital stay or operative rate for either group. However, for patients with appendicitis, 30-d re-presentation rates were significantly higher in 2020 [13% (23) vs 4% (8); P = 0.01].During the COVID-19 pandemic, patients presented with more severe gallbladder disease and appendicitis. These findings suggest that the pandemic has affected patients with acute surgical conditions.

    View details for DOI 10.4240/wjgs.v13.i8.859

    View details for PubMedID 34512909

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC8394376

  • Safety of Foregoing Operation for Small Bowel Obstruction in the Virgin Abdomen: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Journal of the American College of Surgeons Choi, J. n., Fisher, A. T., Mulaney, B. n., Anand, A. n., Carlos, G. n., Stave, C. D., Spain, D. A., Weiser, T. G. 2020

    Abstract

    Our objective was to assess the safety of foregoing surgery in patients without abdominopelvic surgery history presenting with small bowel obstruction (SBO). Classic dogma has counseled early surgical intervention for small bowel obstruction (SBO) in the virgin abdomen - patients without abdominopelvic surgery history - given their presumed higher risk of malignant or potentially catastrophic etiologies compared to those who underwent prior abdominal operations. The term virgin abdomen was coined before widespread use of computed tomography, which now elucidates many SBO etiologies. Despite recent efforts to re-evaluate clinical management standards, the prevalence of SBO etiologies in the virgin abdomen and the current management landscape (non-operative vs operative) in these patients remain unclear. Our random-effects meta-analysis of six studies including 442 patients found the prevalence of malignant etiologies in patients without abdominopelvic surgery history presenting with SBO varied from 7.7% [95% CI:3.0-14.1] to 13.4% [95% CI:7.6-20.3] on sensitivity analysis. Most malignant etiologies were not suspected prior to surgery. De novo adhesions (54%) were the most common etiology. Over half of patients underwent a trial of non-operative management, which often failed. Subgroups of patients likely have variable risk profiles for underlying malignant etiologies, yet no study had consistent follow-up data and we did not find convincing evidence that foregoing operative management altogether in this population can be generally recommended.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jamcollsurg.2020.06.010

    View details for PubMedID 32574687

  • Evaluation of Outcomes Following Surgery for Locally Advanced Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumors. JAMA network open Titan, A. L., Norton, J. A., Fisher, A. T., Foster, D. S., Harris, E. J., Worhunsky, D. J., Worth, P. J., Dua, M. M., Visser, B. C., Poultsides, G. A., Longaker, M. T., Jensen, R. T. 2020; 3 (11): e2024318

    Abstract

    Although outcome of surgical resection of liver metastases from pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (PNETs) has been extensively studied, little is known about surgery for locally advanced PNETs; it was listed recently by the European neuroendocrine tumor society as a major unmet need.To evaluate the outcome of patients who underwent surgery for locally aggressive PNETs.This retrospective single-center case series reviewed consecutive patients who underwent resection of T3/T4 PNETs at a single academic institution. Data collection occurred from 2003 to 2018. Data analysis was performed in August 2019.Disease-free survival (primary outcome) and overall mortality (secondary outcome) were assessed with Kaplan-Meier analysis. Recurrence risk (secondary outcome, defined as identification of tumor recurrence on imaging) was assessed with Cox proportional hazard models adjusting for covariates.In this case series, 99 patients with locally advanced nondistant metastatic PNET (56 men [57%]) with a mean (SEM) age of 57.0 (1.4) years and a mean (SEM) follow-up of 5.3 (0.1) years underwent surgically aggressive resections. Of those, 4 patients (4%) underwent preoperative neoadjuvant treatment (including peptide receptor radionuclide therapy and chemotherapy); 18 patients (18%) underwent pancreaticoduodenectomy, 68 patients (69%) had distal or subtotal pancreatic resection, 10 patients (10%) had total resection, and 3 patients (3%) had other pancreatic procedures. Additional organ resection was required in 86 patients (87%): spleen (71 patients [71%]), major blood vessel (17 patients [17%]), bowel (2 patients [2%]), stomach (4 patients [4%]), and kidney (2 patients [2%]). Five-year disease-free survival was 61% (61 patients) and 5-year overall survival was 91% (91 patients). Of those living, 75 patients (76%) had an Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group score of less than or equal to 1 at last followup. Lymph node involvement (HR, 7.66; 95% CI, 2.78-21.12; P < .001), additional organ resected (HR, 6.15; 95% CI, 1.61-23.55; P = .008), and male sex (HR, 3.77; 95% CI, 1.68-8.97; P = .003) were associated with increased risk of recurrence. Functional tumors had a lower risk of recurrence (HR, 0.23; CI, 0.06-0.89; P = .03). Required resection of blood vessels was not associated with a significant increase recurrence risk.In this case series, positive lymph node involvement and resection of organs with tumor involvement were associated with an increased recurrence risk. These subgroups may require adjuvant systemic treatment. These findings suggest that patients with locally advanced PNETs who undergo surgical resection have excellent disease-free and overall survival.

    View details for DOI 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.24318

    View details for PubMedID 33146734

  • Once a Colon, Always a Colon GASTROENTEROLOGY Fisher, A., Podboy, A., Pottathil, V. 2019; 157 (1): 29–30
  • Management of Ileal Neuroendocrine Tumors with Liver Metastases. Journal of gastrointestinal surgery : official journal of the Society for Surgery of the Alimentary Tract Fisher, A. T., Titan, A. L., Foster, D. S., Worth, P. J., Poultsides, G. A., Visser, B. C., Dua, M. M., Norton, J. A. 2019

    Abstract

    Assessment of treating metastatic ileal neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) with complete resection of primary tumor, nodal and liver metastases, plus administration of long-acting somatostatin analogues (SSAs).A prospective database was queried for patients with ileal or pancreatic NETs with pathology-confirmed liver metastases and tumor somatostatin receptors. Patients did not have MEN-1 and had no previous treatment. The impacts of SSA treatment on the primary outcome of survival and secondary outcome of progression-free survival were assessed with Kaplan-Meier analysis. Log rank test was used to compare overall and progression-free survival among groups.Seventeen ileal NET patients and 36 pancreatic NET patients who underwent surgical resection between 2001 and 2018, who had pathology-confirmed liver metastases and confirmed tumor somatostatin receptors, did not have MEN-1, and had no previous treatment were identified. Median follow-up for patients with ileal NETs was 80 months (range 0-197 months) and 32 months (range 1-182 months) for pancreatic NETs. Five-year survival was 93% and 72% for ileal and pancreatic NET, respectively. Progression-free 5-year survival was 70% and 36% for ileal and pancreatic NET, respectively. Overall 5-year survival for pNETs was greater in those patients treated with SSA (79%) compared to those who underwent surgery alone (34%, p < 0.01). The average ECOG score was low for surviving patients with ileal (0.15) and pancreatic NET (0.73) indicating a good quality of life.Resection of primary lymph node and liver metastatic ileal or pancreatic NETs followed with continued SSAs is associated with an excellent progression-free and overall survival and minimal side effects.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s11605-019-04309-7

    View details for PubMedID 31346887