Anemia Could Add to Surgical Risks10/06/11
THURSDAY, Oct. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Anemia increases the risk
of death and complications in patients who have different types of
surgery, not just heart operations, a new study says.
It was known that patients with anemia have worse outcomes after
heart surgery, but anemia's impact on non-cardiac surgical outcomes
wasn't clear. People with anemia are deficient in red blood
For the new study, researchers analyzed data from more than
227,000 U.S. patients who had various types of surgery: general,
vascular, orthopedic, gynecological, urological, neurosurgical,
otolaryngological, plastic and thoracic. Of the patients in the
study, 69,229 had anemia before their surgery.
The risk of death within 30 days after surgery was 42 percent
higher among the patients with anemia, who were also 35 percent
more likely to have postoperative troubles, such as cardiac,
respiratory, urinary, wound, sepsis and blood clot problems, the
The increased risk of death ranged from 41 percent for patients
with mild anemia to 44 percent for those with moderate-to-severe
anemia. The increased risk of postoperative problems ranged from 31
percent for those with mild anemia to 56 percent for those with
moderate-to-severe anemia, the researchers said.
"Because even mild anemia increases the risk of postoperative morbidity and mortality in patients undergoing major non-cardiac surgery, doctors need to consider preoperative treatment of anemia when possible. Further research is needed to establish the efficacy, safety, and cost-effectiveness of such preoperative anemia management," the researchers at the American University of Beirut Medical Center in Lebanon concluded in a journal news release.
The study appeared online Oct. 5 and will appear in an upcoming
special surgery issue of
The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has more
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