Validation of the Moroccan Arabic Version of the Low Anterior Resection Syndrome (LARS) and Wexner Score of Continence Among Rectal Cancer Patients

2019-10-21 12:45:24 | BioPortfolio


In the past decade, colorectal cancer management improved considerably with total mesorectal excision as well as the multidisciplinary management relying on neoadjuvant radiochemotherapy. This forward leap is currently responsible for an increase in the survivorship of colorectal cancer patients to more than 50% at 5 years. Additively the surgical approach is now more inclined towards sphincter preserving procedures, which allows the conservation of body image but can have negative bowel function repercussions consisting of urgency and incontinence ; all these terms encompassed in the low anterior resection syndrome.

In the light of these findings many studies developed assessment tools in order to objectively measure this functional alteration among which are the low anterior resection syndrome questionnaire (LARS) and the WEXNER score. These tools designed to assess bowel function after sphincter-preserving surgery are now translated and validated into various languages and used in different countries.

The LARS score relies on the frequency of the symptoms and allows the categorization of patients into 3 groups: no LARS (0-20 points), minor LARS (21-29 points), and major LARS (30-42 points). It assesses the frequency of emptying, incontinence ( liquid, gas ), and other symptoms such as urgency and incomplete voiding. On the other hand, the WEXNER score relies on the examination of the frequency of three types of fecal incontinence (solid, liquid, and gas) and their consequences (pad wearing and lifestyle alteration) with frequency options ranging from never (score 0) through to always (meaning at least once per day; score 4). The score ranges from 0 (perfect continence) to 20 (complete incontinence).

The aim of our study is to adapt and validate the LARS and WEXNER score to the moroccan arabic dialect.


The translation of the LARS and WEXNER score to the moroccan dialect ( arabic ) has been done in another study using translation and back translation in concordance with the international guidelines. The questionnaire is administered to a total of 102 patients either directly or via telephone. Reproducibility will be tested through test and retest as one sub-group will be administered the questionnaire twice with an interval of 1 to 2 weeks. Patients will also be administered the questionnaires of the European Organization for Research and treatment of Cancer (EORTC) : QLQ-C30.

The validity of the LARS and WEXNER score will be tested by using the indicators of discriminant validity and convergent validity which will be determined in this study by computing the correlations between the LARS and WEXNER scores to the EORTC QLQ-C30.

For discriminant validity testing, variables used will be factors known to affect bowel function after colorectal surgery such as gender, age, neoadjuvant therapy, distance of the tumor from the anal verge, prior temporary stoma, length of postoperative period, the need for a reintervention and the occurrence of complications.

We recruited for our study patients treated in the National Oncology Institute of Rabat and in the Al azhar oncology center in the surgical department of Pr. Souadka Abdelilah with a minimum post operative interval of 6 months.

The validation of a moroccan dialectical version of the LARS score and WEXNER score will allow a better understanding of the bowel function post surgery and thereby the identification of patients with the highest scores which will allow a better understanding and possible inclusion of these tools in patient outcome assessment.

Study Design


Rectal Cancer Patients




National Institut of Oncology, Surgical oncology department
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Moroccan Society of Surgery

Results (where available)

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Published on BioPortfolio: 2019-10-21T12:45:24-0400

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