Timing of surgery doesn't affect complication rates

Thursday, January 05, 2012
Did you ever wonder whether a surgery on Monday or Friday was riskier than one during the rest of the week, or whether surgery in July, when there are new interns on the wards in teaching hospitals, was riskier than a surgery in May? Well, a new study has analyzed this...and there's no difference in the rates of post-surgery death.  So, while you might not buy a car made on a Monday, it's perfectly fine to have elective surgery then!

Here's the rest of the story, from Cosmetic Surgery times....


Cleveland — Results of a recent study suggest that the timing of surgical procedures — afternoon versus morning, Friday versus Monday — has no effect on the risk of post-surgery death.

Researchers from the Cleveland Clinic analyzed the outcomes of 32,001 elective surgeries performed from 2005 to 2010. The risk of death within 30 days after surgery was analyzed according to time of day (6 a.m. to 7 p.m.), day of the week and month of the year. As much as possible, emergency and urgent surgeries were eliminated from the study.

Researchers found that the overall risk of death within 30 days after surgery was 0.43 percent, and that after adjustment for other factors, mortality risk was not significantly different for patients operated on at different times of day. The same was true for operations performed later in the workweek. The study also shows no increase in mortality in July and August, when new residents begin work.

According to a report in Medical News Today, the findings help to alleviate concerns that fatigue may contribute to higher rates of safety problems for operations performed later in the workday or workweek.

The study appears in the December issue of the journal, Anesthesia & Analgesia.

Thomas Fiala, MD 1/5/2012

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