February 3, 2023

Senior-level residents can perform general surgery cases safely without attending surgeons scrubbed in

Editor's Note

This study led by researchers at Loyola University Medical Center, Maywood, Illinois, and Edward Hines Jr Veterans Administration Hospital, Hines, Illinois, finds that core general surgery cases performed by senior-level residents can be done safely without the attending surgeons scrubbed in.

Of 109,707 patients analyzed, 11,181 had procedures completed with the attending surgeon not scrubbed in, and 98,526 had procedures with the attending scrubbed.

After multivariate logistic analysis and propensity score matching, there were no differences in complication (both were 7%) or mortality (both were 1%) rates.

The findings have relevance in the context of recent trends in US healthcare where external forces continue to limit the opportunities that residents have to be independent, the researchers say.


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