Severity of oEsophageal Anastomotic Leak in patients after oesophagectomy: the SEAL score

TENTACLE-Esophagus Collaborative Group, Sander Ubels, Moniek H.P. Verstegen, Bastiaan R. Klarenbeek, Jari V. Räsänen, Juha Kauppi, Henna Söderström

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikelVetenskapligPeer review


Background: Anastomotic leak (AL) is a common but severe complication after oesophagectomy. It is unknown how to determine the severity of AL objectively at diagnosis. Determining leak severity may guide treatment decisions and improve future research. This study aimed to identify leak-related prognostic factors for mortality, and to develop a Severity of oEsophageal Anastomotic Leak (SEAL) score. Methods: This international, retrospective cohort study in 71 centres worldwide included patients with AL after oesophagectomy between 2011 and 2019. The primary endpoint was 90-day mortality. Leak-related prognostic factors were identified after adjusting for confounders and were included in multivariable logistic regression to develop the SEAL score. Four classes of leak severity (mild, moderate, severe, and critical) were defined based on the risk of 90-day mortality, and the score was validated internally. Results: Some 1509 patients with AL were included and the 90-day mortality rate was 11.7 per cent. Twelve leak-related prognostic factors were included in the SEAL score. The score showed good calibration and discrimination (c-index 0.77, 95 per cent c.i. 0.73 to 0.81). Higher classes of leak severity graded by the SEAL score were associated with a significant increase in duration of ICU stay, healing time, Comprehensive Complication Index score, and Esophagectomy Complications Consensus Group classification. Conclusion: The SEAL score grades leak severity into four classes by combining 12 leak-related predictors and can be used to the assess severity of AL after oesophagectomy.

TidskriftBritish Journal of Surgery
Sidor (från-till)864-871
Antal sidor8
StatusPublicerad - 1 sep. 2022
MoE-publikationstypA1 Tidskriftsartikel-refererad

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Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of BJS Society Ltd.


  • 3126 Kirurgi, anestesiologi, intensivvård, radiologi

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