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Schoenberg, Markus Bo; Han, Yongsheng; Li, Xiaokang; Li, Xinyu; Bucher, Julian Nikolaus; Börner, Nikolaus; Koch, Dominik; Guba, Markus Otto; Werner, Jens; Bazhin, Alexandr V. (2023): Dynamics of Peripheral Blood Immune Cells during the Perioperative Period after Digestive System Resections: A Systematic Analysis of the Literature. Journal of Clinical Medicine, 12 (2): 718. ISSN 2077-0383

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An operation in itself is a kind of trauma and may lead to immunosuppression followed by a bounce back. Not many studies exist that describe dynamics of the distribution of peripheral blood (PB) immune cells during the perioperative period. Considering this scarcity, we aggregated the data on the dynamics of immune cells in patients with digestive system resections during the perioperative period and the relationship with short- and long-term prognoses. By the systematic retrieval of documents, we collected perioperative period data on white blood cells (WBC), lymphocytes, neutrophil–lymphocyte ratio (NLR), CD4+ T cells, CD8+ T cells, helper T cells (Th), B cells, natural killer cells (NK), dendritic cells (DCs), regulatory T cells (Tregs), regulatory B cells (Bregs), and Myeloid derived suppressor cells (MDSC). The frequency and distribution of these immune cells and the relationship with the patient’s prognosis were summarized. A total of 1916 patients’ data were included. Compared with before surgery, WBC, lymphocytes, CD4+ cells, CD8+ T cells, MDSC, and NK cells decreased after surgery, and then returned to preoperative levels. After operation DCs increased, then gradually recovered to the preoperative level. No significant changes were found in B cell levels during the perioperative period. Compared with the preoperative time-point, Tregs and Bregs both increased postoperatively. Only high levels of the preoperative and/or postoperative NLR were found to be related to the patient’s prognosis. In summary, the surgery itself can cause changes in peripheral blood immune cells, which might change the immunogenicity. Therefore, the immunosuppression caused by the surgical trauma should be minimized. In oncological patients this might even influence long-term results.

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