Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Surgical Experience Improves Thyroidectomy Outcome

Date:
October 8, 1998
Source:
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
Summary:
Maryland surgeons who perform the greatest number of thyroidectomies have the lowest complication rates, according to results of a statewide study by Johns Hopkins researchers published in the September 1998 issue of Annals of Surgery.

Maryland surgeons who perform the greatest number of thyroidectomies have the lowest complication rates, according to results of a statewide study by Johns Hopkins researchers published in the September 1998 issue of Annals of Surgery. The complication rate for experienced surgeons was more than a third lower than for those performing fewer operations. Greater surgical experience also resulted in lower total hospital charges for patients undergoing the operation for more serious thyroid conditions.

Disorders of the thyroid gland occur in 3 percent to 5 percent of the population and are the second most prevalent endocrine disease, behind diabetes mellitus. Thyroidectomy -- or removal of the thyroid gland, is done to treat cancer, goiter and in some cases, hyperthyroidism.

"While it may seem like common sense that surgical experience is associated with superior performance in endocrine surgery, until now, there has been little evidence supporting this view," says Robert Udelsman, M.D., director of endocrine and oncology surgery at Hopkins. "Surgeons need to apply outcomes research rigorously to advance clinical care based on something more objective than personal anecdotes."

For the study, the Hopkins research team examined "outcomes" or results for all 5,869 patients who underwent thyroid operations for benign or malignant thyroid disease in 52 Maryland acute care hospitals between 1991 and 1996. Using hospital discharge data, the investigators looked at in-hospital complications, average length of stay and average hospital charges. Death was not considered as an outcome because it is rare following thyroidectomy.

To assess the role of surgical experience in patient results, investigators grouped the surgeons into three categories according to the number of thyroidectomies performed over the six-year study period. The three categories were one to nine operations (group A), 10 to 29 operations (group B), 30 to 100 operations (group C), and more than 100 operations (group D).

After taking into consideration patient age, race, and other existing medical problems to produce a more accurate comparison, the researchers found significant differences in the four categories of surgeons. Patients whose surgeons did the most thyroid operations (group D) had the shortest length of hospital stay (1.4 days versus 1.7 days for groups B and C and 1.9 days for group A. These patients also had the lowest complication rate (5.1 percent for group D versus 6.1 for groups B and C and 8.6 for group A). In fact, the surgeon who performed the most thyroid operations among all the surgeons had the lowest complication rate (2.4 percent), shortest length of stay (1.1 days) and lowest average hospital charges ($2,990).

The superior clinical outcomes produced by greater surgical experience also translated into cost savings for thyroid cancer operations. For surgeons performing the greatest number of cancer surgeries, the average hospital charge was $3,553, versus $3,978 for group C surgeons; $4,046 for group B doctors, and $4,416 for those doctors in group A.

"In an era of ever increasing cost containment, we need to demonstrate outcome data to determine how to allocate limited resources," Udelsman says.

Toby Gordon, Sc.D., a coauthor of the study and associate professor of surgery at Hopkins, says, "These kinds of outcomes studies underscore the importance of surgical experience in obtaining the best clinical results for patients and the best economic results for payers."

--JHMI--

Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions' news releases are available on a PRE-EMBARGOED basis on EurekAlert at http://www.eurekalert.org, Newswise at http://www.newswise.com and from the Office of Communications and Public Affairs' direct e-mail news release service. To enroll, call 410-955-4288 or send e-mail to bsimpkins@jhmi.edu.

On a POST-EMBARGOED basis find them at http://hopkins.med.jhu.edu, Quadnet at http://www.quad-net.com and ScienceDaily at http://www.sciencedaily.com.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "Surgical Experience Improves Thyroidectomy Outcome." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 October 1998. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/10/981007154239.htm>.
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. (1998, October 8). Surgical Experience Improves Thyroidectomy Outcome. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/10/981007154239.htm
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "Surgical Experience Improves Thyroidectomy Outcome." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/10/981007154239.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued new protocols for healthcare workers interacting with Ebola patients. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Ebola Vaccine Trials to Start a in January

WHO: Ebola Vaccine Trials to Start a in January

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) Tens of thousands of doses of experimental Ebola vaccines could be available for "real-world" testing in West Africa as soon as January as long as they are deemed safe in soon to start trials, the World Health Organization said Tuesday. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 21, 2014) The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has set up new guidelines for health workers taking care of patients infected with Ebola. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins