If you’ve scheduled a surgery or other procedure that requires hospitalization, you most likely have a lot of things to worry about: you might be worried about the risk that your hospital stay results in unforeseen complications; you might have concerns regarding the quality of care you will receive; you might have even started thinking about your options for post-hospital care. One thing you probably haven’t given much thought to, however, is how the date of your surgery might affect your risk of developing surgical post-surgical complications.
A recent study conducted by researchers at the University Medicine Berlin shows that certain days of the week present a higher risk of post-surgical complications. The researchers analyzed the results of 218,758 patients who underwent surgery between 2006 and 2011 at two University Hospital Campuses of Charité Tertiary Care University Center, Berlin. The data showed that surgery conducted in the afternoon was accompanied by a 21% increase in the risk of death as compared to surgery conducted at other times of the day. Additionally, when patients had surgery over the weekend, the risk of death was 22% greater than that of patients who had surgery during the week. Finally, the researchers found that February was the riskiest month for surgical procedures, with a 16% greater risk of death than the other months.
Why would the time of the day or the day of the week affect the risk of post-surgical death? According to the authors of the study, “it may be that standard of care differs throughout the day and between weekdays and weekends.” Additionally, it could be that the patients treated on weekends and in the afternoons had more severe conditions than those treated during the week or in the mornings. The authors caution that more research needs to be done before a definitive conclusion can be reached, but they do say the results of the study highlight a need for greater emphasis on patient safety.
If you or a family member has been the victim of medical malpractice, call the law firm of Allen, Allen, Allen & Allen. The lawyers at Allen & Allen are experienced in handling a variety of personal injury cases. They will evaluate your claims, investigate your case, and use the collective experience and resources of the firm to get you the compensation you deserve. Call us at 866-388-1307 for a free consultation. We have offices across Virginia in Richmond, Charlottesville, Petersburg and Fredericksburg.
About the Author: Mic McConnell is a medical malpractice attorney with the law firm of Allen & Allen, working primarily out of their Richmond office. With over 20 years of experience, Mic has handled challenging cases in almost every medical specialty. Mic was named Best Lawyers' 2013 Richmond Medical Malpractice Law - Plaintiffs "Lawyer of the Year."