Featured Articles in Jun 2021

Announcements from the Editor-in-Chief

 

Author: Julie Ann Sosa

Abstract: None.

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Strong for Surgery: Association Between Bundled Risk Factors and Outcomes After Major Elective Surgery in the VA Population

 

Authors: Douglas Z. Liou, Deven C. Patel, Prasha Bhandari, Sherry M. Wren, Nell J. Marshall, Alex HS. Harris, Joseph B. Shrager, Mark F. Berry, Natalie S. Lui & Leah M. Backhus

Abstract:

Background

Strong for Surgery (S4S) is a public health campaign focused on optimizing patient health prior to surgery by identifying evidence-based modifiable risk factors. The potential impact of S4S bundled risk factors on outcomes after major surgery has not been previously studied. This study tested the hypothesis that a higher number of S4S risk factors is associated with an escalating risk of complications and mortality after major elective surgery in the VA population.

Methods

The Veterans Affairs Surgical Quality Improvement Program (VASQIP) database was queried for patients who underwent major non-emergent general, thoracic, vascular, urologic, and orthopedic surgeries between the years 2008 and 2015. Patients with complete data pertaining to S4S risk factors, specifically preoperative smoking status, HbA1c level, and serum albumin level, were stratified by number of positive risk factors, and perioperative outcomes were compared.

Results

A total of 31,285 patients comprised the study group, with 16,630 (53.2%) patients having no S4S risk factors (S4S0), 12,323 (39.4%) having one (S4S1), 2,186 (7.0%) having two (S4S2), and 146 (0.5%) having three (S4S3). In the S4S1 group, 60.3% were actively smoking, 35.2% had HbA1c > 7, and 4.4% had serum albumin < 3. In the S4S2 group, 87.8% were smokers, 84.8% had HbA1c > 7, and 27.4% had albumin < 3. Major complications, reoperations, length of stay, and 30-day mortality increased progressively from S4S0 to S4S3 groups. S4S3 had the greatest adjusted mortality risk (adjusted odds radio [AOR] 2.56, p = 0.04) followed by S4S2 (AOR 1.58, p = 0.02) and S4S1 (AOR 1.34, p = 0.02).

Conclusion

In the VA population, patients who had all three S4S risk factors, namely active smoking, suboptimal nutritional status, and poor glycemic control, had the greatest risk of postoperative mortality compared to patients with fewer S4S risk factors.

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Clinical Outcomes of Acute Appendicitis During Pregnancy: Conservative Management and Appendectomy

 

 

Authors: Masayuki Nakashima, Masato Takeuchi & Koji Kawakami

Abstract:

Methods

Using a nationwide claim-based database in Japan, we analyzed the data of pregnant patients who were diagnosed with appendicitis between January 2005 and May 2019. Patient characteristics, imaging studies, length of hospital stay, proportion of fetal losses, complications, and type of antibiotics were examined.

Results

The study included 169 patients, of whom 113 patients (67%) underwent conservative management, and appendectomies were performed on 56 patients (open 25% and laparoscopic 8%). The proportion of ultrasonography, computed tomography, and magnetic resonance imaging were 97%, 17%, and 5% (for conservative management); 88%, 39%, and 13% (for appendectomy); 86%, 38%, and 21% (for open appendectomy); and 93%, 43%, and 14% (for laparoscopic appendectomy), respectively. The proportion of complicated appendicitis was 6% in conservative management and 41% in appendectomy (40% in open appendectomy and 43% in laparoscopic appendectomy), respectively.

 

The incidence of fetal loss was 4% in conservative management, 5% in appendectomy (2% in open appendectomy, and 14% in laparoscopic appendectomy). However, there was only one fetal loss (in laparoscopic appendectomy) in the same case of hospitalization. There were no maternal deaths or serious complications after any treatment.

Conclusion

All treatments showed acceptable outcomes in appendicitis during pregnancy. Conservative management is considered an acceptable option, especially in uncomplicated cases of appendicitis in pregnant women.

Long-Term Trends and Predictors of Medical Resource Utilization and Medical Outcomes in Inguinal Hernia Repair

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ERAS Risk Factors for Anastomotic Leakage in Patients with Rectal Tumors Undergoing Anterior Resection within an ERAS Protocol

 

Authors: Daniel Asklid, Olle Ljungqvist, Yin Xu & Ulf O. Gustafsson

Abstract:

Background

Research on risk factors for anastomotic leakage (AL) alone within an Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) protocol has not yet been conducted. The aim of this study was to identify risk factors for AL and study short-term outcome after AL in patients operated with anterior resection (AR).

Methods

All prospectively and consecutively recorded patients operated with AR in the Swedish part of the international ERAS® Interactive Audit System (EIAS) between January 2010 and February 2020 were included. The cohort was evaluated regarding risk factors for AL and short-term outcomes, including uni- and multivariate analysis. Pre-, intra- and postoperative compliance to ERAS®Society guidelines was calculated and evaluated.

Results

Altogether 1900 patients were included, 155 (8.2%) with AL and 1745 without AL. Male gender, obesity, peritoneal contamination, year of surgery 2016–2020, duration of primary surgery and age remained significant predictors for AL in multivariate analysis. There was no significant difference in overall pre- and intraoperative compliance to ERAS®Society guidelines between groups. Only preadmission patient education remained as a significant ERAS variable associated with less AL. AL was associated with longer length of stay (LOS), higher morbidity rate and higher rate of reoperations.

Conclusion

Male gender, obesity, peritoneal contamination, duration of surgery, surgery later in study period, age and preadmission patient education were associated with AL in patients operated on with AR. Overall pre- and intraoperative compliance to the ERAS protocol was high in both groups and not associated with AL.

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COVID: Morbidity and Mortality in Patients with Perioperative COVID-19 Infection

 

Authors: Martin Inzunza, Cecilia Romero, María Jesús Irarrázaval, Magdalena Ruiz-Esquide, Pablo Achurra, Nicolás Quezada, Fernando Crovari & Rodrigo Muñoz

Background

Severe acute respiratory syndrome due to coronavirus 2 has rapidly spread worldwide in an unprecedented pandemic. Patients with an ongoing COVID-19 infection requiring surgery have higher risk of mortality and complications. This study describes the mortality and morbidity in patients with perioperative COVID-19 infection undergoing elective and emergency surgeries.

Methods

Prospective cohort of consecutive patients who required a general, gastroesophageal, hepatobiliary, colorectal, or emergency surgery during COVID-19 pandemic at an academic teaching hospital. The primary outcome was 30-day mortality and major complications. Secondary outcomes were specific respiratory mortality and complications.

Results

A total of 701 patients underwent surgery, 39 (5.6%) with a perioperative COVID-19 infection. 30-day mortality was 12.8% and 1.4% in patients with and without COVID-19 infection, respectively (p < 0.001). Major surgical complications occurred in 25.6% and 6.8% in patients with and without COVID-19 infection, respectively (p < 0.001). Respiratory complications occurred in 30.8% and 1.4% in patients with and without COVID-19 infection, respectively (p < 0.001). Mortality due to a respiratory complication was 100% and 11.1% in patients with and without COVID-19 infection, respectively (p < 0.006).

Conclusions

30-day mortality and surgical complications are higher in patients with perioperative COVID-19 infection. Indications for elective surgery need to be reserved for non-deferrable procedures in order to avoid unnecessary risks of non-urgent procedures.

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My First Paper Access to Essential Surgical Care in Chiapas, Mexico: A System-Wide Geospatial Analysis

 

Authors:  Fernando Carrillo-Villaseñor, Zachary Fowler, Ellie Moeller, Lina Roa, Valeria Macias, Rachel Koch, Sebastián Mohar, Luke Caddell, Sabrina Cervantes, Ian Mathews, Robert Riviello, Arturo Cervantes-Trejo, John G. Meara & Tarsicio Uribe-Leitz

Abstract:

Background

Long travel times to reach essential surgical care in Chiapas, Mexico’s poorest state, can delay lifesaving procedures and contribute to adverse outcomes. Geographical access to surgical facilities is 1 of the 6 indicators of the Lancet Commission on Global Surgery and has been measured extensively worldwide. Our objective is to determine the population with 2-h geographical access to facilities capable of performing the Bellwether procedures (laparotomy, cesarean delivery, and open fracture repair). This is the first study in Mexico to assess access to surgical facilities, including both the fragmented public sector and the private sector.

Methods

In this cross-sectional study, conducted from June 2019 to January 2020, Bellwether capable surgical facilities from all health systems in Chiapas were geocoded and assessed through on-site data collection, Ministry of Health databases, and verified via telephone. Geospatial analyses were performed on Redivis.

Results

We identified 59 Bellwether capable hospitals, with 17.5% (n = 954,460) of the state residing more than 2 h from surgical care in public and private health systems. Of those, 22 facilities had confirmed 24/7 Bellwether capability, and 23% (n = 1,178,383) of the affiliated population resided more than 2 h from these hospitals.

Conclusions

Our study shows that the Ministry of Health and employment-based health coverage could provide timely access to essential surgical care for the majority of the population. However, the fragmentation of the healthcare system leaves a gap that contributes to delays in care and unmet emergency surgical needs.

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Ilioinguinal Nerve Neurectomy is better than Preservation in Lichtenstein Hernia Repair

 

Authors: Roberto Cirocchi, Marco Sutera, Piergiorgio Fedeli, Gabriele Anania, Piero Covarelli, Fabio Suadoni, Carlo Boselli, Luigi Carlini, Stefano Trastulli, Vito D’Andrea & Paolo Bruzzone

Objective

This study aimed to evaluate the incidence of chronic groin pain (primary outcome) and alterations of sensitivity (secondary outcome) after Lichtenstein inguinal hernia repair, comparing neurectomy with ilioinguinal nerve preservation surgery.

Summary background data

The exact cause of chronic groin postoperative pain after mesh inguinal hernia repair is usually unclear. Section of the ilioinguinal nerve (neurectomy) may reduce postoperative chronic pain.

Methods

We followed PRISMA guidelines to identify randomized studies reporting comparative outcomes of neurectomy versus ilioinguinal nerve preservation surgery during Lichtenstein hernia repairs. Studies were identified by searching in PubMed, Scopus, and Web of Science from April 2020. The protocol for this systematic review and meta-analysis was submitted and accepted from PROSPERO: CRD420201610.

Results

In this systematic review and meta-analysis, 16 RCTs were included and 1550 patients were evaluated: 756 patients underwent neurectomy (neurectomy group) vs 794 patients underwent ilioinguinal nerve preservation surgery (nerve preservation group). All included studies analyzed Lichtenstein hernia repair. The majority of the new studies and data comes from a relatively narrow geographic region; other bias of this meta-analysis is the suitability of pooling data for many of these studies.

A statistically significant percentage of patients with prosthetic inguinal hernia repair had reduced groin pain at 6 months after surgery at 8.94% (38/425) in the neurectomy group versus 25.11% (113/450) in the nerve preservation group [relative risk (RR) 0.39, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.28–0.54; Z = 5.60 (P < 0.00001)]. Neurectomy did not significantly increase the groin paresthesia 6 months after surgery at 8.5% (30/353) in the neurectomy group versus 4.5% (17/373) in the nerve preservation group [RR 1.62, 95% CI 0.94–2.80; Z = 1.74 (P = 0.08)]. At 12 months after surgery, there is no advantage of neurectomy over chronic groin pain; no significant differences were found in the 12-month postoperative groin pain rate at 9% (9/100) in the neurectomy group versus 17.85% (20/112) in the inguinal nerve preservation group [RR 0.50, 95% CI 0.24–1.05; Z = 1.83 (P = 0.07)]. One study (115 patients) reported data about paresthesia at 12 months after surgery (7.27%, 4/55 in neurectomy group vs. 5%, 3/60 in nerve preservation group) and results were not significantly different between the two groups [RR 1.45, 95% CI 0.34, 6.21;Z = 0.51 (P = 0.61)]. The subgroup analysis of the studies that identified the IIN showed a significant reduction of the 6th month evaluation of pain in both groups and confirmed the same trend in favor of neurectomy reported in the previous overall analysis: statistically significant reduction of pain 6 months after surgery at 3.79% (6/158) in the neurectomy group versus 14.6% (26/178) in the nerve preservation group [RR 0.28, 95% CI 0.13–0.63; Z = 3.10 (P = 0.002)].

Conclusion

Ilioinguinal nerve identification in Lichtenstein inguinal hernia repair is the fundamental step to reduce or avoid postoperative pain. Prophylactic ilioinguinal nerve neurectomy seems to offer some advantages concerning pain in the first 6th month postoperative period, although it might be possible that the small number of cases contributed to the insignificancy regarding paresthesia and hypoesthesia.

Nowadays, prudent surgeons should discuss with patients and their families the uncertain benefits and the potential risks of neurectomy before performing the hernioplasty.

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Blumgart Anastomosis After Pancreaticoduodenectomy

 

Authors: Claudio Ricci, Carlo Ingaldi, Laura Alberici, Nico Pagano, Cristina Mosconi, Giovanni Marasco, Francesco Minni & Riccardo Casadei

Abstract:

Background

The superiority of Blumgart anastomosis (BA) over non-BA duct to mucosa (non-BA DtoM) still remains under debate.

Methods

We performed a systematic search of studies comparing BA to non-BA DtoM. The primary endpoint was CR-POPF. Postoperative morbidity and mortality, post-pancreatectomy hemorrhage (PPH), delayed gastric emptying (DGE), reoperation rate, and length of stay (LOS) were evaluated as secondary endpoints. The meta-analysis was carried out using random effect. The results were reported as odds ratio (OR), risk difference (RD), weighted mean difference (WMD), and number needed to treat (NNT).

Results

Twelve papers involving 2368 patients: 1075 BA and 1193 non-BA DtoM were included. Regarding the primary endpoint, BA was superior to non-BA DtoM (RD = 0.10; 95% CI: −0.16 to −0.04; NNT = 9). The multivariate ORs' meta-analysis confirmed BA's protective role (OR 0.26; 95% CI: 0.09 to 0.79). BA was superior to DtoM regarding overall morbidity (RD = −0.10; 95% CI: −0.18 to −0.02; NNT = 25), PPH (RD = −0.03; 95% CI −0.06 to −0.01; NNT = 33), and LOS (− 4.2 days; −7.1 to −1.2 95% CI).

Conclusion

BA seems to be superior to non-BA DtoM in avoiding CR-POPF.

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