Endoluminal vacuum-assisted therapy (EVT) has been introduced recently to treat colorectal anastomotic leaks in clinically stable non-peritonitic patients. Its application has been mainly reserved to low colorectal and colo-anal anastomoses. The main advantage of this new procedure is to ensure continuous drainage of the abscess cavity, to promote and to accelerate the formation of granulation tissue resulting in a reduction of the abscess cavity. The reported results are promising allowing a higher preservation of the anastomosis when compared to conventional treatments that include trans-anastomotic tube placement, percutaneous drainage, endoscopic clipping of the anastomotic defect or stent placement. Nevertheless, despite this procedure is gaining acceptance among the surgical community, indications, inclusion criteria and definitions of success are not yet standardized and extremely heterogeneous, making it difficult to reach definitive conclusions and to ascertain which are the real benefits of this new procedure. Moreover, long-term and functional results are poorly reported. The present review is focused on critically analyzing the theoretical benefits and risks of the procedure, short- and long-term functional results and future direction in the application of EVT.
Endoluminal vacuum-assisted therapy to treat rectal anastomotic leakage: A critical analysis / Vignali, A.; De Nardi, P.. - In: WORLD JOURNAL OF GASTROENTEROLOGY. - ISSN 2219-2840. - 28:14(2022), pp. 1394-1404. [10.3748/wjg.v28.i14.1394]