What is a distal gastrectomy?

A distal gastrectomy or antrectomy removes part of the stomach and stitches the remainder with an opening into the small intestine.
A distal gastrectomy or antrectomy removes part of the stomach and stitches the remainder with an opening into the small intestine.

Antrectomy (distal gastrectomy) is a procedure that involves surgical removal of the lower 30% of the stomach (antrum). Distal gastrectomy is a type of partial gastrectomy that involves the surgical removal of only a portion of the stomach.  

A partial gastrectomy surgery is followed by a surgery to create a connection (anastomosis) of the remaining portion of the stomach to the duodenum (gastroduodenostomy) or the jejunum (gastrojejunostomy) of the small intestine.

Why is antrectomy (distal gastrectomy) performed?

Antrectomy is mainly indicated in the treatment of gastric ulcers that are:

  • not responsive to medication
  • complicated by holes (perforation)
  • bleeding or obstructing
  • recurring

Antrectomy is also indicated in the treatment of noncancerous tumors or for the early stages of cancer involving the lower part of the stomach.

When should an antrectomy be avoided?

Antrectomy should be avoided in the following conditions:

What happens during the antrectomy surgery?

Before the treatment, you will be counseled regarding the surgery, its complications and its risk and benefits. 

Also, some of the instructions which you need to follow before and on the day of surgery are:

Procedure

During the surgery 

  • The surgeon makes a cut extending from the chest to the belly button
  • Once the abdomen is open and accessible, the surgeon conducts a thorough evaluation to assess the extent of disease. 
  • After the assessment, the lower portion of the stomach (antrum) is surgically removed.
  • The remaining portion of the stomach is connected with the duodenum or the jejunum of the small intestine.

What are the complications of distal gastrectomy?

Complications of the antrectomy include

  • Leakage from the newly connected area
  • Infection
  • Bleeding 
  • Blood clots or edema in the newly connected site
  • Recurring ulcer disease
  • Inflammation in the pancreas
  • Dumping syndrome: When the small intestine has to digest a large amount of food at once, it can lead to nausea, diarrhea or vomiting.
  • Gastritis (inflammation of the lining of the stomach)
  • Increasing blood sugar level
  • Fast heart rate
  • Feeling lethargic
  • Confusion

QUESTION

Pancreatitis is inflammation of an organ in the abdomen called the pancreas. See Answer

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors

Medically Reviewed on 7/8/2020
References
Medscape Medical Reference

MSKCC.org