Risk of gastric spillage during transgastric surgery is a potential complication of NOTES procedures. The aim of this study was to determine risk outcomes from gastric spillage in a rat survival model by measuring local and systemic inflammatory markers, adhesive disease, and morbidity.
We performed a minilaparotomy with needle aspiration of 2 ml of gastric contents mixed with 2 ml of sterile saline (study group, SG) or 4 ml of sterile saline (control group, CG) injected into the peritoneal cavity of 60 male rats. Inflammatory markers (TNFα, IL-6, and IL-10) were analyzed at 1, 3, 6, and 24 h postoperatively by obtaining plasma levels and peritoneal washings. At necropsy, the peritoneal cavity was examined grossly for adhesions.
Adhesions were seen more frequently in the SG versus the CG (100% vs. 33.3%, p < 0.014). There was a significant difference in the peritoneal TNFα levels in the SG compared with the CG, which peaked 1 h after surgery (p < 0.02). Both peritoneal IL-6 and IL-10 levels were higher in the SG versus the CG, which peaked 3 h after surgery (p < 0.005 and p < 0.001, respectively). All peritoneal inflammatory markers returned to undetectable levels at 24 h for both groups. Plasma cytokines were undetectable at all time intervals.
The inflammatory response was found to be a localized and not systemic event, with plasma cytokine levels remaining normal while peritoneal washings revealed a brisk, short-lived localized inflammatory response. There was a significantly higher rate of adhesive disease in the SG compared with the CG; this, however did not translate into a difference in apparent clinical outcome. We conclude that gastric leakage in this NOTES rodent model induces a localized inflammatory response, followed by mild to moderate adhesive disease. This may be important in human NOTES.