NOVA SCOTIA RECTAL CANCER PROJECT: A POPULATION BASED ASSESSMENT OF RECTAL CANCER CARE AND OUTCOMES
Richardson, Devon Paula
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Purpose: To describe patient & tumor characteristics among rectal cancer patients in Nova Scotia, to determine factors associated with permanent colostomy and oncologic outcomes and to determine the relationship between surgeon knowledge and oncologic outcomes.Methods:The Provincial cancer registry identified new rectal cancer patients from in Nova Scotia. A comprehensive review of inpatient, outpatient and cancer center medical records was used to assemble the cohort. Surgeon knowledge was assessed using a survey with questions pertaining to rectal cancer care.Results: Patient & tumor characteristics were similar between hospitals providing rectal cancer care. Patients treated by high volume cancer center surgeons are less likely to undergo a permanent colostomy or have a local recurrence compared to patients treated elsewhere. Patients treated by surgeons with a high survey score have improved clinical and oncologic outcomes.Conclusions: There is an opportunity to improve rectal cancer care in Nova Scotia.