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Blood perfusion assessment by indocyanine green fluorescence imaging for minimally invasive rectal cancer surgery (EssentiAL trial). A randomized clinical trial.

Watanabe J, Takemasa I, Kotake M, Noura S, Kimura K, Suwa H et al, for the EssentiAL Trial Group.

Ann Surg 2023; 274: e668-e694.

This multicentre study from Japan included 839 patients. Use of indocyanine green reduced the rate of anastomotic leak to 7.6 versus 11.8 per cent in controls, P=0.041.

Comment: The authors report this as a negative study.

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