Predictors of Morbidity and Mortality in Esophageal Perforation: Retrospective Study of 80 Patients

M. Zimmermann*, M. Hoffmann, T. Jungbluth, H. P. Bruch, T. Keck, E. Schloericke

*Korrespondierende/r Autor/-in für diese Arbeit
3 Zitate (Scopus)


Background and Aims: Esophageal perforation is a life-threatening disease. Factors impacting morbidity and mortality include the cause and site of the perforation, the time to diagnosis, and the therapeutic procedure. This study aimed to identify risk factors for morbidity and mortality after esophageal perforation. Patients and Methods: This retrospective study analyzed data collected from all patients treated for esophageal perforation at the Department of Surgery, University of Schleswig–Holstein, Luebeck Campus, from January 1986 through December 2011. Results: Altogether, 80 patients (52 men, 28 women; mean age 65 years) were treated. The cause of perforation was intraluminal in 44 (55%) (group A) and extraluminal in 2 (3%) (group B). Spontaneous perforations were observed in 12 (15%) (group C). Perforations were due to a preexisting esophageal disease in 22 (28%) (group D). The survival rate was higher for group A (82%) than for groups B (50%), C (57%), and D (59%). The distal third of the esophagus had the highest prevalence of perforations (49, 61%) independent of the cause. Mortality, however, was independent of the perforation site. Perforations were diagnosed within 24 h in 57% (n = 46) of patients, associated with a statistically significant lower mortality rate (p = 0.035). Altogether, 40 patients underwent non-operative treatment, and among those 27 had endoscopic treatment. Emergency thoracic surgery was performed in 40 patients: direct suture of the defect (n = 26), partial esophageal resection (n = 11), other (n = 3). Significantly higher morbidity (p = 0.007) and prolonged hospitalization (p < 0.0001) was observed among patients who underwent emergency surgery. Mortality was higher in the surgical group (14/40) than in the non-operative treatment group (9/40) but without statistical significance. Conclusion: Intraluminal perforations, rapid initiation of therapy, and non-operative treatment were associated with favorable outcomes. The perforation site did not have an impact on outcomes. Esophageal resection was associated with high mortality.

ZeitschriftScandinavian Journal of Surgery
Seiten (von - bis)126-132
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 01.06.2017

Strategische Forschungsbereiche und Zentren

  • Profilbereich: Lübeck Integrated Oncology Network (LION)


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