Trends in Postoperative Sepsis: Are We Improving Outcomes?

The Surgical Outcomes Research Group, Department of Surgery, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, New Brunswick, New Jersey 08903-0019, USA.
Surgical Infections (Impact Factor: 1.45). 02/2009; 10(1):71-8. DOI: 10.1089/sur.2008.046
Source: PubMed


Each year, as many as two million operations are complicated by surgical site infections in the United States, and surgical patients account for 30% of patients with sepsis. The purpose of this study was to determine recent trends in sepsis incidence, severity, and mortality rate after surgical procedures and to evaluate changes in the pattern of septicemia pathogens over time.
Analysis of the 1990-2006 hospital discharge data from the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP) State Inpatient Databases (SID) for New Jersey. Patients >or= 18 years who developed sepsis after surgery were identified using International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification codes as defined by the Patient Safety Indicator "Postoperative Sepsis" developed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Severe sepsis was defined as sepsis complicated by organ dysfunction.
A total of 1,276,451 surgery discharges (537,843 elective [42.1%] and 738,608 non-elective [57.9%] procedures) were identified. After elective surgery, 5,865 patients (1.09%) developed postoperative sepsis, of whom 2,778 (0.52%) had severe sepsis. The incidence of postoperative sepsis after elective surgery increased from 0.67% to 1.74% (p < 0.0001) and severe sepsis after elective surgery from 0.22% to 1.12% (p < 0.0001). The sepsis mortality rate for elective procedures showed no significant change over time. The proportion of severe sepsis after elective cases increased from 32.9% to 64.6% (p < 0.0002). The rates of postoperative sepsis (4.24%) and severe sepsis (2.28%) were significantly greater for non-elective than for elective procedures (p < 0.0002). Non-elective surgical procedures had a significant increase in the rates of postoperative sepsis (3.74% to 4.51%) and severe sepsis (1.79% to 3.15%) over time (p < 0.0001) with the proportion of severe sepsis increasing from 47.7% to 69.9% (p < 0.0002). The in-hospital mortality rate after non-elective surgery decreased from 37.9% to 29.8% (p < 0.0001).
Sepsis and death were more likely after non-elective than elective surgery. Sepsis and severe sepsis has increased significantly after elective and non-elective procedures over the last 17 years. The hospital mortality rate was reduced significantly after non-elective surgery, but no improvements were found for elective surgery patients who developed sepsis. Disparities in age, sex, and ethnicity and the development of postoperative surgical sepsis were found. Population-based studies may assist in defining temporal trends, disparities, and outcomes in sepsis not elucidated in smaller studies.

Download full-text


Available from: Viktor Y Dombrovskiy, Feb 18, 2014
  • Source
    • "There are 1239 post operative patients, 26 of which become septic. This is consistent with the prevalence of sepsis in postoperative patients which is 1 to 16 percent [2] [12] [13]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Objective: Sepsis represents a major factor in morbidity and mortality in postoperative patients. The systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) criteria are binary statistics used to identify patients with sepsis, and are based on four physiological variables: body temperature, heart rate, breathing rate, and white blood cell count. However, the SIRS criteria have been criticized for having reduced specificity (high false positive rate), which diminishes their utility in clinical settings. This paper presents new features derived from the same four variables, and a methodology for predicting sepsis in postoperative patients under moderate care. Methods and material: Data for 1213 sepsis and 26 non-sepsis patients are obtained from post-operative patients on telemetry. We propose new temporal features that capture trends and variability in the SIRS variables, and a framework for prediction based on kernel methods. Since the physiological variables of patients in moderate care are sampled irregularly, the temporal
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The cognate signals from sterile or pathogen-induced sources converge on the same recognition or response pathways. In the surgical patient, a systemic response to infection most often occurs in the context of ongoing inflammatory stress. Such an inflammatory response is modulated initially by the magnitude of injury and by patient-specific (endogenous) factors, such as confounding illness, age, and genetic variation. Over an extended period of stress, treatmentrelated (exogenous) factors add unpredictability to host responses to subsequent challenges, such as acquired infection. The host response is discussed in the context of how existing sterile stressors may modify the response to acquired infection in surgical patients.
    Surgical Clinics of North America 05/2009; 89(2):311-26, vii. DOI:10.1016/j.suc.2008.09.004 · 1.88 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This study was conducted to evaluate and compare the rates of postoperative infectious complications and death after elective vascular surgery, define vascular procedures with the greatest risk of developing nosocomial infections, and assess the effect of infection on health care resource utilization. The Nationwide Inpatient Sample (2002-2006) was used to identify major vascular procedures by International Classification of Diseases, 9th Clinical Modification (ICD-9-CM) codes. Infectious complications identified included pneumonia, urinary tract infections (UTI), postoperative sepsis, and surgical site infections (SSI). Case-mix-adjusted rates were calculated using a multivariate logistic regression model for infectious complication or death as an outcome and indirect standardization. A total of 870,778 elective vascular surgical procedures were estimated and evaluated with an overall postoperative infection rate of 3.70%. Open abdominal aortic surgery had the greatest rate of postoperative infections, followed by open thoracic procedures and aorta-iliac-femoral bypass. Thoracic endovascular aneurysm repair (TEVAR) infectious complication rates were two times greater than after EVAR (P < .0001). Pneumonia was the most common infectious complication after open aortic surgery (6.63%). UTI was the most common after TEVAR (2.86%) and EVAR (1.31%). Infectious complications were greater in octogenarians (P < .0002), women (P < .0001), and blacks (P < .0001 vs whites and Hispanics). Nosocomial infections after elective vascular surgery significantly increased hospital length of stay (13.8 +/- 15.4 vs 3.5 +/- 4.2 days; P < .001) and reported total hospital cost ($37,834 +/- $42,905 vs $11,851 +/- $11,816; P < .001). Elective vascular surgical procedures vary widely in the estimated risk of postoperative infection. Open aortic surgery and endarterectomy of the head and neck vessels have, respectively, the greatest and the lowest reported incidence for postoperative infectious complications. Women, octogenarians, and blacks have the highest risk of infectious complications after elective vascular surgery. Disparities in the development of infectious complications on a systems level were also found in larger hospitals and teaching hospitals. Hospital infectious complications were found to significantly increase health care resource utilization. Strategies that reduce nosocomial complications and target high-risk procedures may offer significant future cost savings.
    Journal of vascular surgery: official publication, the Society for Vascular Surgery [and] International Society for Cardiovascular Surgery, North American Chapter 11/2009; 51(1):122-9; discussion 129-30. DOI:10.1016/j.jvs.2009.08.006 · 3.02 Impact Factor
Show more