Risk of tumor implantation in percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy in the upper aerodigestive tumors

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Francesca Vincenzi
Giuseppina De Caro
Federica Gaiani
Fabiola Fornaroli
Roberta Minelli
Gioacchino Leandro
Francesco Di Mario
Gian Luigi de' Angelis


percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy, metastasis, aerodigestive tumors


Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) has become a mainstay in providing enteral access for patients with obstructive head, neck and esophageal tumors. Tumor cell implantation is a rare complication in patients with aerodigestive cancers, who have undergone PEG tube placement. The objective of this review is to determine the incidence and contributing risk factors leading to the implantation of metastases into the abdominal wall following PEG placement. A comprehensive review of the literature in PUBMED (2008-2018) was performed.  The literature search revealed reports of more than 50 cases of abdominal wall metastases after PEG placement. As most of these studies were case reports, the exact rate of metastasis remains unknown. Generally pharyngoesophageal location of primary cancer (100%), squamous cell histology (98%), poorly differentiated tumor cells (92%), advanced pathological stage (97%), and large primary cancer size were identified as strong risk factors for the development of stomal metastasis. Abdominal wall metastases following PEG placement are a rare but serious complication in patients with head and neck malignancy.


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