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1.  Adjuvant hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) in patients with colon cancer at high risk of peritoneal carcinomatosis; the COLOPEC randomized multicentre trial 
BMC Cancer  2015;15:428.
Background
The peritoneum is the second most common site of recurrence in colorectal cancer. Early detection of peritoneal carcinomatosis (PC) by imaging is difficult. Patients eventually presenting with clinically apparent PC have a poor prognosis. Median survival is only about five months if untreated and the benefit of palliative systemic chemotherapy is limited. Only a quarter of patients are eligible for curative treatment, consisting of cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (CR/HIPEC). However, the effectiveness depends highly on the extent of disease and the treatment is associated with a considerable complication rate.
These clinical problems underline the need for effective adjuvant therapy in high-risk patients to minimize the risk of outgrowth of peritoneal micro metastases. Adjuvant hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) seems to be suitable for this purpose. Without the need for cytoreductive surgery, adjuvant HIPEC can be performed with a low complication rate and short hospital stay.
Methods/Design
The aim of this study is to determine the effectiveness of adjuvant HIPEC in preventing the development of PC in patients with colon cancer at high risk of peritoneal recurrence. This study will be performed in the nine Dutch HIPEC centres, starting in April 2015. Eligible for inclusion are patients who underwent curative resection for T4 or intra-abdominally perforated cM0 stage colon cancer. After resection of the primary tumour, 176 patients will be randomized to adjuvant HIPEC followed by routine adjuvant systemic chemotherapy in the experimental arm, or to systemic chemotherapy only in the control arm. Adjuvant HIPEC will be performed simultaneously or shortly after the primary resection. Oxaliplatin will be used as chemotherapeutic agent, for 30 min at 42-43 °C. Just before HIPEC, 5-fluorouracil and leucovorin will be administered intravenously. Primary endpoint is peritoneal disease-free survival at 18 months. Diagnostic laparoscopy will be performed routinely after 18 months postoperatively in both arms of the study in patients without evidence of disease based on routine follow-up using CT imaging and CEA.
Discussion
Adjuvant HIPEC is assumed to reduce the expected 25 % absolute risk of PC in patients with T4 or perforated colon cancer to a risk of 10 %. This reduction is likely to translate into a prolonged overall survival.
Trial registration number
NCT02231086 (Clinicaltrials.gov)
doi:10.1186/s12885-015-1430-7
PMCID: PMC4492087  PMID: 26003804
Adjuvant hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC); Colon cancer; Peritoneal carcinomatosis (PC)
2.  Comparative evaluation of atracurium dosed on ideal body weight vs. total body weight in morbidly obese patients 
AIMS
This double-blind randomized study evaluated atracurium dosing based on ideal body weight vs. total body weight for muscle relaxation in morbidly obese patients undergoing bariatric surgery.
METHODS
Twenty patients (body weight 112–260 kg, BMI 38–79 kg m−2) were randomized to receive atracurium 0.5 mg kg−1 ideal body weight vs. 0.5 mg kg−1 total body weight. Primary endpoint was neuromuscular blockade using train-of-four ratios (TOF ratios) and secondary endpoints were intubation conditions and need for antagonism with neostigmine.
RESULTS
In the ideal body weight group, times to recovery of TOF ratio from 0 to 5%, 50% and 75% were significantly shorter [TOF ratio from 0 to 5%: mean difference 30 min (95% CI 23, 39 min)] and with lower variability compared with the total body weight group. In the total body weight group there was a significant correlation between atracurium dose and time to a TOF ratio of 5% (r = 0.82, P < 0.001), which was absent in the ideal body weight group (r = 0.24). In both groups, intubation conditions were good while 70% of the patients in the total body weight group needed neostigmine at the end of surgery compared with 0% in the ideal body weight group.
CONCLUSION
In morbid obesity (112–260 kg), atracurium 0.5 mg kg−1 ideal body weight results in a predictable profile of muscle relaxation allowing for adequate intubation conditions and recovery of muscle strength to a TOF ratio >90% within 60 min with lack of need for antagonism. A dose-dependent prolongation of action is shown when dosing is based on total body weight.
doi:10.1111/j.1365-2125.2010.03803.x
PMCID: PMC3018024  PMID: 21143499
atracurium; muscle relaxant; obesity; train-of-four
3.  The ladies trial: laparoscopic peritoneal lavage or resection for purulent peritonitisA and Hartmann's procedure or resection with primary anastomosis for purulent or faecal peritonitisB in perforated diverticulitis (NTR2037) 
BMC Surgery  2010;10:29.
Background
Recently, excellent results are reported on laparoscopic lavage in patients with purulent perforated diverticulitis as an alternative for sigmoidectomy and ostomy.
The objective of this study is to determine whether LaparOscopic LAvage and drainage is a safe and effective treatment for patients with purulent peritonitis (LOLA-arm) and to determine the optimal resectional strategy in patients with a purulent or faecal peritonitis (DIVA-arm: perforated DIVerticulitis: sigmoidresection with or without Anastomosis).
Methods/Design
In this multicentre randomised trial all patients with perforated diverticulitis are included. Upon laparoscopy, patients with purulent peritonitis are treated with laparoscopic lavage and drainage, Hartmann's procedure or sigmoidectomy with primary anastomosis in a ratio of 2:1:1 (LOLA-arm). Patients with faecal peritonitis will be randomised 1:1 between Hartmann's procedure and resection with primary anastomosis (DIVA-arm). The primary combined endpoint of the LOLA-arm is major morbidity and mortality. A sample size of 132:66:66 patients will be able to detect a difference in the primary endpoint from 25% in resectional groups compared to 10% in the laparoscopic lavage group (two sided alpha = 5%, power = 90%). Endpoint of the DIVA-arm is stoma free survival one year after initial surgery. In this arm 212 patients are needed to significantly demonstrate a difference of 30% (log rank test two sided alpha = 5% and power = 90%) in favour of the patients with resection with primary anastomosis. Secondary endpoints for both arms are the number of days alive and outside the hospital, health related quality of life, health care utilisation and associated costs.
Discussion
The Ladies trial is a nationwide multicentre randomised trial on perforated diverticulitis that will provide evidence on the merits of laparoscopic lavage and drainage for purulent generalised peritonitis and on the optimal resectional strategy for both purulent and faecal generalised peritonitis.
Trial registration
Nederlands Trial Register NTR2037
doi:10.1186/1471-2482-10-29
PMCID: PMC2974662  PMID: 20955571
4.  DIRECT trial. Diverticulitis recurrences or continuing symptoms: Operative versus conservative Treatment. A MULTICENTER RANDOMISED CLINICAL TRIAL 
BMC Surgery  2010;10:25.
Background
Persisting abdominal complaints are common after an episode of diverticulitis treated conservatively. Furthermore, some patients develop frequent recurrences. These two groups of patients suffer greatly from their disease, as shown by impaired health related quality of life and increased costs due to multiple specialist consultations, pain medication and productivity losses.
Both conservative and operative management of patients with persisting abdominal complaints after an episode of diverticulitis and/or frequently recurring diverticulitis are applied. However, direct comparison by a randomised controlled trial is necessary to determine which is superior in relieving symptoms, optimising health related quality of life, minimising costs and preventing diverticulitis recurrences against acceptable morbidity and mortality associated with surgery or the occurrence of a complicated recurrence after conservative management.
We, therefore, constructed a randomised clinical trial comparing these two treatment strategies.
Methods/design
The DIRECT trial is a multicenter randomised clinical trial. Patients (18-75 years) presenting themselves with persisting abdominal complaints after an episode of diverticulitis and/or three or more recurrences within 2 years will be included and randomised. Patients randomised for conservative treatment are treated according to the current daily practice (antibiotics, analgetics and/or expectant management). Patients randomised for elective resection will undergo an elective resection of the affected colon segment. Preferably, a laparoscopic approach is used.
The primary outcome is health related quality of life measured by the Gastro-intestinal Quality of Life Index, Short-Form 36, EQ-5D and a visual analogue scale for pain quantification. Secondary endpoints are morbidity, mortality and total costs. The total follow-up will be three years.
Discussion
Considering the high incidence and the multicenter design of this study, it may be assumed that the number of patients needed for this study (n = 214), may be gathered within one and a half year.
Depending on the expertise and available equipment, we prefer to perform a laparoscopic resection on patients randomised for elective surgery. Should this be impossible, an open technique may be used as this also reflects the current situation.
Trial Registration
(Trial register number: NTR1478)
doi:10.1186/1471-2482-10-25
PMCID: PMC2928179  PMID: 20691040

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