February 19, 2019

Factors linked to functional recovery of geriatric major surgery patients

By: Judy Mathias
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Editor’s Note

In this prospective study, nonfrailty and elective surgery were positively associated with functional recovery of older patients after major surgery.

Of 754 community-living patients 70 years or older who were analyzed, 266 survived major surgery with increased disability and were monitored for 6 months.

A total of 174 (65.4%) recovered to their preoperative function, with a median time to recovery of 2 months, and 16 (6.0%) died.

Two factors significantly associated with increased likelihood of functional recovery were being nonfrail and having elective surgery. Three factors associated with reduced likelihood of functional recovery were hearing impairment, years of education, and a greater increase in postoperative disability in the first month after discharge.

The findings are important because predictors of functional recovery after major surgery in geriatric patients has not been well-studied, the authors say.

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