Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Surgical instruments left in children rarely fatal, but dangerous, study finds

Date:
November 16, 2010
Source:
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
Summary:
Surgical items, such as sponges and small instruments, left in the bodies of children who undergo surgery are quite uncommon and rarely fatal but decidedly dangerous and expensive mistakes, according to a new study.

Surgical items, such as sponges and small instruments, left in the bodies of children who undergo surgery are quite uncommon and rarely fatal but decidedly dangerous and expensive mistakes, according to a Johns Hopkins Children's Center study to be published in the November issue of Archives of Surgery, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Related Articles


Such errors added eight days, on average, to a young patient's hospital stay and nearly $36,000 in extra hospital charges, both stemming from complications and the need for follow-up surgery to retrieve the forgotten objects.

Analyzing more than 1.9 million records over 17 years detailing surgeries performed on children nationwide, the researchers identified 413 cases of items left behind, or 0.02 percent -- an uncommon but costly and preventable error that can cause complications and require expensive repeat surgeries, the investigators say.

The retrospective study examined patient records after the fact and did not directly analyze factors such as operating room conditions and surgical routines that increased the chance of leaving items inside a patient. Yet the researchers noted that teenage patients undergoing surgeries for gynecological problems had the greatest risk -- four times higher than other patients -- based on how frequently they ended up being wheeled out of the OR with a surgical item left inside them. The finding suggests that some operations may be inherently riskier than others.

"It's important to find out what mistakes we make as surgeons, but it is infinitely more important to know why we're making them and how we can prevent them," says principal investigator Fizan Abdullah, M.D., Ph.D., a pediatric surgeon at Johns Hopkins.

The study did find a difference in death rates between patients with and without surgical items left in them after surgery, 1.7 percent compared with 0.7 percent, but the discrepancy was so small it could have been the result of pure chance, the investigators say.

Most instances of forgotten items involved gastrointestinal surgeries -- 22 percent of the 413 episodes occurred during such procedures -- followed by cardio-thoracic surgeries (16 percent) and orthopedic surgeries (13 percent).

The research was funded in part by the Robert Garrett Fund for Treatment of Children.

Other investigators in the study included Melissa Camp, M.D. M.P.H, David Chang, Ph.D. M.P.H. M.B.A., Yiyi Zhang, M.H.S., Kristin Chrouser, M.D. M.P.H., and Paul Colombani, M.D. M.B.A..


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Melissa Camp; David C. Chang; Yiyi Zhang; Kristin Chrouser; Paul M. Colombani; Fizan Abdullah. Risk Factors and Outcomes for Foreign Body Left During a Procedure: Analysis of 413 Incidents After 1 946 831 Operations in Children. Archives of Surgery, 2010;145(11):1085-1090. DOI: 10.1001/archsurg.2010.241

Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "Surgical instruments left in children rarely fatal, but dangerous, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115173853.htm>.
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. (2010, November 16). Surgical instruments left in children rarely fatal, but dangerous, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115173853.htm
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "Surgical instruments left in children rarely fatal, but dangerous, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115173853.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) The new year is coming and nothing will energize you more for 2015 than protein-filled foods. Fitness and nutrition expert John Basedow (@JohnBasedow) gives his favorite high protein foods that will help you build muscle, lose fat and have endless energy. Video provided by Buzz60
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