April 18, 2019

Operative volume is essential quality indicator for performing emergent general surgery in elderly

By: Judy Mathias
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Editor’s Note

In this study, survival rates for geriatric patients were significantly improved when emergency general surgery procedures were performed at hospitals with higher operative volumes.

Of 41,860 surgical procedures evaluated at 200 hospitals, mortality decreased as hospital emergency operative volume increased. For every standardized increase in volume, reduction in mortality ranged from 14% for colectomy to 61% for appendectomy.

Hospital volume thresholds varied by procedure, with a mean of 14 procedures over 2 years. More than half of the hospitals did not meet the threshold benchmarks, representing 22% of patients.

Hospital operative volume appears to be an important metric of surgical quality for this patient population, the researchers note.

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