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Surgery News

Post-Op Bacterial Infection Raises Odds for Complications, Death

Posted 4 days ago by

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 25, 2015 – People recuperating from surgery are much more likely to die or develop complications if they become infected with a dangerous diarrhea-causing bacteria, a new study suggests. Patients at VA hospitals who contracted Clostridium difficile following surgery were five times more likely to die and 12 times more likely to suffer a complication of the heart, lung, kidneys or nervous system, according to findings published online Nov. 25 in the journal JAMA Surgery. "C. difficile infection is a big hit to take for people who are already behind the eight-ball," said Dr. Brian Zuckerbraun, a surgeon at the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System who co-wrote an accompanying editorial. "It's just a big insult to their system, when they are vulnerable." C. difficile is a tough and opportunistic bacteria that can invade the intestines of people whose gut bacteria have been wiped ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Surgery, Bacterial Infection, Bacterial Skin Infection, Clostridial Infection, Bacteremia

Too Much Traffic in OR May Put Patients at Risk, Study Finds

Posted 16 days ago by

FRIDAY, Nov. 13, 2015 – Many operating rooms have too many people coming and going during surgeries, which puts patients at increased risk for infections, a new study suggests. Most operating rooms in U.S. hospitals have special ventilation systems meant to keep out potentially contaminated air from surrounding corridors. But every time the doors open, outside air can get into the operating room, the study authors explained. In this study, researchers recorded the number and length of door openings during nearly 200 knee and hip surgeries at the Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center in Baltimore. In one-third of the operations, there were enough door openings to potentially defeat the safety effects of the doorway airflow system, according to the study published online Nov. 11 in the journal Orthopedics. It's likely this is a common problem nationwide, the Johns Hopkins University ... Read more

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First Uterus Transplant Planned in U.S.

Posted 16 days ago by

FRIDAY, Nov. 13, 2015 – Crossing new frontiers in infertility treatment and organ transplantation, Cleveland Clinic doctors hope to transplant a uterus from a deceased donor into a woman without one. The innovative procedure – tentatively scheduled for the next few months – would enable a woman with ovaries but no uterus to become pregnant and deliver a child. Eight women have reportedly started the screening process. These women were either born without a uterus – a condition that affects 1 of every 4,500 newborn girls – or have had their uterus removed or it is damaged, according to The New York Times. The clinical trial, a first in the United States, was announced Thursday, a year after the first live birth from a uterine transplant occurred in Sweden. In Sweden, however, live donors are used. The Cleveland Clinic doctors decided on deceased donors to avoid putting healthy women ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Surgery, Diagnosis and Investigation, Organ Transplant, Vascular Surgery, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Lung Cancer Surgery Rates Differ Widely Between States

Posted 16 days ago by

FRIDAY, Nov. 13, 2015 – Rates of surgery to cure lung cancer vary greatly across the United States, a new study finds. Researchers analyzed data from patients in 38 states and the District of Columbia who were diagnosed with early stage non-small cell lung cancer between 2007 and 2011. Non-small cell lung cancer is the most common type of lung cancer. It can potentially be cured by surgery if it's detected at an early stage before it spreads, the study authors pointed out. The highest rates of surgery to cure lung cancer were seen in Massachusetts, New Jersey and Utah, at about 75 percent each. The lowest rate was in Wyoming, where patients were 25 percent less likely to have curative surgery than those in the top three states, the findings showed. "We do not have a uniform quality of health care in this country," said Dr. Helmneh Sineshaw, health services researcher with the American ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Lung Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Small Cell Lung Cancer, Vascular Surgery, Bronchogenic Carcinoma

Arm Artery Access Safer for Angioplasty, Review Finds

Posted 16 days ago by

FRIDAY, Nov. 12, 2015 – For patients experiencing heart attacks or severe chest pain, it is safer to access blocked vessels through an arm artery rather than a groin artery, a new analysis finds. After reviewing four international trials involving more than 17,000 patients, the Italian researchers found that 27 percent fewer patients died when their vessel-opening angioplasties were performed via the arm artery. And more than 40 percent fewer major bleeding events were recorded in this group when compared to the groin artery group, according to the meta-analysis, published Nov. 10 in the Annals of Internal Medicine. "I was not surprised, as several previous trials and pooled analyses had already suggested that radial [arm] access reduces access site-related major bleeding and that this occurrence may ultimately reduce mortality," said study author Dr. Giuseppe Ando, an assistant ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Diagnosis and Investigation, Vascular Surgery, High Risk Percutaneous Transluminal Angioplasty

Emergency Surgery Patients Often Wind Up Back in Hospital: Study

Posted 18 days ago by

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 11, 2015 – Nearly one in five patients who are readmitted to a hospital after having emergency general surgery are there because they developed a surgical site infection, a new study suggests. "Reducing readmissions is a noble cost-saving goal with benefits not only to the hospitals, but also to the patients," researcher Dr. Joaquim Havens, of Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, and colleagues wrote. "However, it is critical to understand the underlying factors associated with readmission to appropriately identify quality-improvement measures that address the true problem." There was wide variation in readmission rates, depending on the type of surgery and patient characteristics, the study authors said. The investigators examined data from more than 177,000 patients, aged 18 and older, who had emergency general surgery in California between 2007 and 2011. The most ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Surgery, Surgical Prophylaxis

High-Risk Lung Cancer Patients May Benefit From Surgery

Posted 19 days ago by

TUESDAY, Nov. 10, 2015 – Surgery to remove part of the lung can be a safe and effective treatment option for people with early stage lung cancer, even those traditionally considered "high-risk," a new study finds. Previous research had suggested that high-risk patients are more likely to have complications or to die after lung surgery. People aged 60 and older, long-term smokers, and people who have other health problems are considered high-risk for partial lung removal surgery, the researchers said. One in five patients with early stage non-small-cell lung cancer is deemed high-risk or ineligible for lung surgery, according to the study, which was published online Nov. 10 in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery. But the new findings show these patients shouldn't be denied surgery, because they may benefit from it, study leader Dr. Manu Sancheti, from Emory University School of Medicine in ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Cancer, Lung Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Small Cell Lung Cancer, Surgical Prophylaxis, Bronchogenic Carcinoma

Jury Still Out on Silicone Breast Implant Safety

Posted 19 days ago by

MONDAY, Nov. 9, 2015 – After years of study, a new analysis finds there is still insufficient evidence on whether silicone breast implants are linked to any long-term health effects. The report, published online Nov. 9 in the Annals of Internal Medicine, is the latest round in the long debate over silicone breast implant safety. The implants came to the U.S. market in the 1960s. But in 1992, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration called for a moratorium on silicone implants until more could be learned about their long-range safety. The move came in response to concerns that ruptured silicone implants might pose health hazards that could emerge years later – raising the odds of breast cancer, reproductive problems or connective tissue diseases, like rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia. Studies in the years since have failed to show definitive links to any disease risk, and the ... Read more

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Weight-Loss Surgery May Bring Long-Term Benefits to Very Obese Teens

Posted 6 Nov 2015 by

FRIDAY, Nov. 6, 2015 – Weight-loss surgeries, long used by obese adults to drop excess pounds, may provide long-lasting health benefits to very obese teenagers, a new study finds. The study of extremely obese teens found that, three years after either gastric bypass surgery or a procedure called sleeve gastrectomy, the average patient had lost 27 percent of his or her original weight. What's more, many also showed remission of obesity-linked ills such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. "We found significant improvements in weight, cardiometabolic health and weight-related quality of life at three years after the [weight-loss] procedure," wrote a team led by Dr. Thomas Inge, of Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. His team published the findings online Nov. 6 in the New England Journal of Medicine, to coincide with a planned presentation of the ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Obesity, Weight Loss, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery

Complications From Tummy Tucks Exceed Other Cosmetic Surgeries

Posted 5 Nov 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 4, 2015 – Tummy tucks cause more major complications than other types of cosmetic surgery, researchers report. The risk is even higher among patients who have a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) in combination with other types of cosmetic surgery, according to the new findings. "Although the overall incidence of major complications is low, such complications can leave a potentially devastating cosmetic outcome and pose a significant financial burden on the patient and surgeon," the study authors wrote. For the study, researchers analyzed data from 2008 to 2013 from an insurance program that covers cosmetic surgery complications. Major complications occurred in 4 percent of tummy tucks, compared with 1.4 percent of other types of cosmetic surgery, the study found. Most common major complications were hematomas (collection of blood outside blood vessels), infections, blood ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Surgery, Bacterial Skin Infection

Weight-Loss Surgery Often Brings Less Painful Joints: Study

Posted 4 Nov 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 4, 2015 – Aching knee and hip joints may hurt less after successful weight-loss surgery, a new study suggests. "In particular, walking is easier, which impacts patients' ability to adopt a more physically active lifestyle," lead researcher Wendy King said in a news release from the ObesityWeek meeting. Weight-loss surgery isn't a "magic bullet" for joint pain for every patient, however. "Some patients continue to have significant pain and disability" even after the operation, said King, who is an associate professor of epidemiology at the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Public Health. King's team was to present the findings Wednesday at the ObesityWeek meeting in Los Angeles, which is hosted by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery and The Obesity Society. In the study, the researchers tracked outcomes for more than 2,200 obese people, ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Obesity, Weight Loss, Hip Replacement, Knee Joint Replacement, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Orthopedic Surgery

Surgeon's Calming Words May Ease Stress of Surgery

Posted 28 Oct 2015 by

TUESDAY, Oct. 27, 2015 – Few moments in life are more daunting than those just before a surgery. But a new study finds that some reassuring words from a doctor just before an operation begins may be more effective than drugs in easing patient anxiety. The French study was led by Dr. Emmanuel Boselli, a physician anesthesiologist at Edouard Herriot Hospital in Lyons. His team examined the use of what's known as "conversational hypnosis." This method involves the doctor talking quietly and positively to the patient – saying things such as "Keep calm and quiet," rather than "Please don't move" – and focusing the patient's attention on something other than anesthesia and surgery preparations. In a study involving 100 patients undergoing hand surgery, this approach was compared to the use of hydroxyzine, a pill often given to patients to relax them before surgery. Fifty of the patients ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Anxiety and Stress

No Need to Stop Taking Statins Before Surgery, Study Finds

Posted 27 Oct 2015 by

TUESDAY, Oct. 27, 2015 – Stopping cholesterol-lowering statins before non-cardiac surgery is unnecessary and may increase the risk of death following the operation, researchers report. In their study, doctors from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), found that although the practice of stopping statins before an operation is no longer recommended, many patients are still being told to do so. Moreover, patients who stopped taking statins before surgery or who didn't start them again within two days after surgery had a 40 percent increased risk of dying within 30 days, the investigators found. "Recently, a number of studies have suggested that continued use of statins in patients undergoing non-cardiac surgery is associated with significantly lower risk of cardiovascular events and death," said Dr. Gregg Fonarow, a professor of cardiology at the University of California, ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Pravachol, Red Yeast Rice, Livalo, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Pitavastatin, Fluvastatin, Altoprev, Cardiothoracic Surgery

Medication Errors Seen in Half of All Operations in Study

Posted 26 Oct 2015 by

SUNDAY, Oct. 25, 2015 – In a new study on how often medication errors occur during surgery, researchers report that mistakes were made during almost half of the operations they analyzed. The mistakes included drug labeling errors, incorrect dosing, drug documentation mistakes, and/or failing to properly treat changes in a patient's vital signs during surgery. Overall, a medication error or adverse drug event was documented in 124 of 277 surgeries. Of the 3,675 medication administrations (most patients receive more than one drug during surgery), 193 medication errors and adverse drug events were recorded, the Harvard researchers said. And almost 80 percent of those events were determined to have been preventable. The findings stem from the in-house efforts of Boston-based Massachusetts General Hospital to quantify and address drug-error risk during surgery. "This is the first ... Read more

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Nitrous Oxide OK During Surgery for People With Heart Disease

Posted 26 Oct 2015 by

SUNDAY, Oct. 25, 2015 – Nitrous oxide, commonly known as "laughing gas," is a safe anesthetic for surgery patients who have or are at risk of heart disease, a new study finds. The findings are "welcome news because nitrous oxide is widely used around the world as part of the mixture of agents for general anesthesia," lead author Dr. Kate Leslie, a professor at Royal Melbourne Hospital in Australia, said in an American Society of Anesthesiologists news release. "Nitrous oxide is inexpensive, simple to administer and helps with pain as well as anesthesia," she added. The research included nearly 6,000 patients. All had surgery that didn't involve the heart. The study volunteers received either general anesthesia with nitrous oxide or general anesthesia with nitrogen. A year after surgery, there was no difference in rates of heart attack, stroke, disability or death between the two ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Heart Disease, Nitrous Oxide, Ischemic Heart Disease

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Surgical Prophylaxis, Ophthalmic Surgery, Head & Neck Surgery, Neurosurgery, Orthopedic Surgery, Cardiothoracic Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery, Postoperative Albumin Loss, Vascular Surgery, Biliary Tract Surgery, Genitourinary Surgical and Other Conditions, Extracorporeal Perfusion