Uptake of transanal total mesorectal excision (TaTME)

Panagiotis A. Georgiou, Janindra Warusavitarne


Total mesorectal excision (TME) is the gold standard for rectal cancer surgery since Heald standardised the technique, which required sharp dissection within the mesorectal plane to remove the primary tumour and the associated lymph nodes. This was shown to improve the oncological outcomes and allow preservation of the sphincter, with resultant good quality of life (1). In addition, a distance of 2 cm from the surgical margins was shown to be oncologically safe (2). This has allowed more sphincter saving operations to be performed for rectal cancer with less compromise of oncological outcomes.