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The American surgeon [journal]
- Improbable Survival after Prolonged Traumatic Cardiopulmonary Arrest: Revisiting the 15-minute Rule. [Journal Article]
- Am Surg 2013 Jun; 79(6):649-50.
- Cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy for peritoneal carcinomatosis from small bowel adenocarcinoma. [Journal Article]
- Am Surg 2013 Jun; 79(6):644-8.
Peritoneal carcinomatosis arising from small bowel adenocarcinoma (PCSBA) carries a dismal prognosis. Presently, limited data have been published on the outcome of PCSBA treated with cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC). This series represents the largest series published to date examining our experience with 17 patients. From 1995 to 2011, 17 patients underwent HIPEC with mitomycin for PCSBA. Patients in this study were identified from a prospectively maintained database. Twenty HIPEC procedures were performed on 17 patients with a mean age of 52.2 years. Patients have achieved a mean overall postoperative survival of 18.4 months after progression on chemotherapy with an overall postoperative one- and three-year survival of 52 and 23 per cent, respectively. The mean total length of hospital stay was 10 days. There was no treatment-related mortality. Six patients were readmitted to the hospital within 30 days of discharge (35%). Eight patients (47%) experienced postoperative complications, in which two patients had major postoperative complications in the form of intra-abdominal abscess requiring interventions (12%). HIPEC has encouraging survival results for patients with PCSBA compared with similar patients treated with conventional treatments. However, even with such advancement in management, treatment for small bowel adenocarcinoma still remains a challenge.
- Accuracy of computed tomography in small bowel obstruction. [Journal Article]
- Am Surg 2013 Jun; 79(6):641-3.
Small bowel obstruction is a common clinical occurrence, primarily caused by adhesions. The diagnosis is usually made on the clinical findings and the presence of dilated bowel loops on plain abdominal radiograph. Computed tomography (CT) is increasingly used to diagnose the cause and location of the obstruction to aid in the timing of surgical intervention. We used a retrospective chart review to identify patients with a diagnosis of small bowel obstruction between 2009 and 2012. We compared the findings on CT with the findings at operative intervention. Sixty patients had abdominal CT and subsequent surgical intervention. Eighty-three per cent of CTs were correct for small intestine involvement and 80 per cent for colon involvement. The presence of adhesions or perforation was correctly identified in 21 and 50 per cent, respectively. Sixty-four per cent correctly identified a transition point. The presence of a mass was correctly identified in 69 per cent. Twenty per cent of the patients who had ischemic small bowel at surgery were identified on CT. CT has a role in the clinical assessment of patients with small bowel obstruction, identifying with reasonable accuracy the extent of bowel involvement and the presence of masses and transition points. It is less reliable at identifying adhesions, perforations, or ischemic bowel.
- Endoscopic Stent Insertion versus Primary Operative Management for Spontaneous Rupture of the Esophagus (Boerhaave Syndrome): An International Study Comparing the Outcome. [Journal Article]
- Am Surg 2013 Jun; 79(6):634-40.
Spontaneous rupture of the esophagus (Boerhaave syndrome) is an extremely rare, life-threatening condition. Traditionally surgery was the treatment of choice. Endoscopic stent insertion offers a promising alternative. The aim of this study was to compare the results of primary surgical therapy with endoscopic stenting. A British and a German high-volume center for esophageal surgery participated in this retrospective study. At the British center, operative therapy (primary repair or surgical drainage) was routinely carried out. Endoscopic stent insertion was the primary treatment option at the German center. Only patients with nonmalignant, spontaneous rupture of the esophagus (Boerhaave syndrome) were included. Demographic characteristics, comorbidity, clinical course, and outcome were analyzed. The study comprises 38 patients with a median age of 60 years. Time between rupture and treatment was less than 24 hours in 22 patients. Overall mortality was four of 38. Diagnosis greater than 24 hours was associated with higher risk for fatal outcome (odds ratio [OR], 4.64; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.33 to 265.79). The surgery (S) and the endoscopic stent group (E) included 20 and 13 cases, respectively. Esophagectomy was unavoidable in three cases and two were managed conservatively. There were no significant differences in age, time to diagnosis less than 24 hours, intensive care unit days, hospital stay, sepsis, renal failure, slow respiratory weaning, or presence of comorbidity between the two groups. In 11 of 13 in the stent group, operative intervention (video-assisted thoracic surgery, thoracotomy, mediastinotomy) was eventually mandatory and three of 13 even required repeated surgery. The rate of reoperation in the surgery group was six of 20. Mortality was two of 13 (E) versus one of 20 (S). The odds for fatal outcome were 3.3 times higher in the stent group than in the surgery group (OR, 3.32; 95% CI, 0.15 to 213.98). Management of Boerhaave syndrome by means of endoscopic stent insertion offers no advantage regarding morbidity, intensive care unit or hospital stay, and is associated with frequent treatment failure eventually requiring surgical intervention. Furthermore, endoscopic stenting shows a higher risk for fatal outcome than primary surgical therapy.
- Fast-track Pathway for Minimally Invasive Colorectal Surgery with and without Alvimopan (Entereg)(TM): Which is More Cost-effective? [Journal Article]
- Am Surg 2013 Jun; 79(6):630-3.
Multimodal fast-track (FT) pathways for both open and laparoscopic colorectal surgery have been shown to improve gastrointestinal recovery, shorten length of stay, and decrease morbidity. The aim of our study was to determine if using alvimopan (Entereg)™ in the setting of a FT minimally invasive colorectal pathway is beneficial and cost-effective. All minimally invasive colorectal surgeries performed by one surgeon using a multimodal FT pathway with and without alvimopan were reviewed. Ninety total patients were identified, 64 patients treated without and 26 with alvimopan. Main outcomes included postoperative day tolerating a soft diet, return of gastrointestinal function, length of stay, 30-day readmission rate, and patient care, anesthesia, pharmacy, and combined cost. Tolerance of a soft diet, return of gastrointestinal function, and length of stay were all shorter and showed significance in the alvimopan group (mean 2.1 vs 2.8 days, mean 1.5 vs 2.4 days, and mean 3.5 vs 4.5 days, respectively) (P = 0.0197, P = 0.0029, and 0.0158, respectively). Patient care and combined hospital costs were both increased in the nonalvimopan group; however, combined hospital costs was not significant (P = 0.0216 and P = 0.0875, respectively). The 30-day readmission rate of 6.3 per cent was also not significant in this group (P = 0.0941). Patients undergoing minimally invasive colorectal surgery treated with a multimodal FT pathway tolerated a soft diet sooner, had earlier return of bowel function, a shorter length of stay, and lower patient care and combined costs when alvimopan was used.
- Analysis of 855 upper extremity fistulas created using a standard protocol: the role of graft extension to achieve functional status. [Journal Article]
- Am Surg 2013 Jun; 79(6):625-9.
The Fistula First Breakthrough Initiative (FFBI) has been one of the most important national programs to help achieve considerable improvements in the care of patients on chronic hemodialysis. FFBI has helped place guidelines to push practitioners to reduce the use of tunneled central venous catheters and to increase the rate of arteriovenous fistula use in patients requiring chronic hemodialysis access. However, despite current guidelines, no specific protocols exist for the creation and management of autogenous arteriovenous fistulas and outcomes at most centers are below national benchmarks. In this study, we examine the effectiveness of a standard protocol used at our institution for the creation of autogenous upper extremity fistulas for hemodialysis access in achieving early cannulation and early removal of tunneled dialysis catheters. Our review encompasses 855 consecutive autogenous fistulas created over a 10-year period. Our findings suggest that the use of a standard protocol for creation and management of autogenous fistulas can help increase the rate of functional accesses over national benchmarks. Additionally, extension/conversion of malfunctioning fistulas to grafts appears to be an excellent method to expedite removal of a tunneled dialysis catheter with concomitant preservation of a fistula.
- Cytoreductive surgery with hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy in peritoneal sarcomatosis. [Journal Article]
- Am Surg 2013 Jun; 79(6):620-4.
Cytoreductive surgery with hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (CRS-HIPEC) is the treatment most likely to achieve prolonged survival for peritoneal surface disease from various primaries, yet management of peritoneal sarcomatosis is controversial as a result of the propensity of sarcomas for hematogenous spread and the paucity of effective chemotherapy. Therefore, we reviewed our experience in patients with sarcomatosis. A retrospective analysis of a prospective database of 990 procedures was performed. Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group, age, type of primary, resection status, morbidity, mortality, and outcomes were reviewed. Over 20 years, 17 cytoreductions for sarcomatosis were performed. After excluding patients with gastrointestinal stromal tumor or uterine leiomyosarcoma, 10 procedures performed in seven patients remained. Median follow-up was 84.8 months. R0/1 resection was achieved in 60 per cent. The 30-day morbidity was 50 per cent; no operative mortality rate was observed. R2 resection had no long-term survivors. The reason for death was peritoneal recurrence in 57 per cent. Median survival was 21.6 months and five-year survival was 43 per cent. Median survival for patients with peritoneal sarcomatosis treated with CRS-HIPEC is similar with the historical reported survival before introducing chemoperfusion. Although a complete cytoreduction is related to improved survival, the role of HIPEC in these patients is unknown. A multi-institutional review will help define the role of CRS-HIPEC in this population.
- Length of Nonoperative Treatment and Risk of Pleural Empyema in the Management of Pancreatitis-induced Pancreaticopleural Fistula. [Journal Article]
- Am Surg 2013 Jun; 79(6):614-9.
Pancreaticopleural fistula is a very uncommon complication of pancreatitis resulting from pancreatic duct disruption with leakage of pancreatic secretions into the pleural cavity. Initial conservative treatment fails in a significant number of cases. Ascending infection through the fistulous tract results in pleural empyema. The aim of this study is to investigate the relation between lengths of nonoperative management and risk of pleural empyema. The retrospective study includes our own experience as well as all case reports identified by a systematic review of the English literature from 1954 to 2012. Inclusion criteria were acute or chronic pancreatitis, whereas tumorous fistulization or complications of pancreatic surgery were kept out. A total of 113 patients were identified. There were 86 men and 27 women. The mean age was 46.5 years and 78 patients had a history of alcoholism. The mortality rate was 1.8 per cent (two of 113). Nonoperative management including interventional therapy and endoscopic stenting was successful in only 40 cases (36%), whereas 73 patients (64%) finally underwent surgery. The most common procedure was distal pancreatectomy (32 of 73). Pleural empyema occurred in 17 cases. Successful nonoperative management had a mean length of 5.5 weeks, whereas surgery was performed after an average of 10.9 weeks of failed conservative efforts. Initial nonoperative therapy was significantly longer in patients eventually sustaining empyema (17 weeks, P < 0.001) and all needed surgical intervention. Prolonged nonoperative treatment is associated with a noteworthy risk of septic complications such as pleural empyema. Further improvement seems achievable by reducing the time gap between fruitless conservative efforts and surgical intervention.
- Surgical Failures: Is It the Surgeon or the Patient? The All too Often Missed Diagnosis of Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. [Journal Article]
- Am Surg 2013 Jun; 79(6):608-13.
Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) is a closely related group of disorders caused by a heritable defect in collagen synthesis, which leads to marked healing difficulties. It has been estimated to occur in between one in 2500 and one in 5000 individuals but likely occurs more frequently than reported. EDS has probably been seen by all general surgeons several times over the course of a career. The purpose of this report is to describe the findings that should raise the index of suspicion, to aid in the diagnosis, and to characterize the general surgical procedures seen in patients with EDS by reviewing a single surgeon's experience in managing such patients with a review of the literature. Recommendations for treatment are given. A retrospective review of the experience of a single surgeon of 25 procedures in 15 patients with EDS is being reported. This is believed to be the largest series by one surgeon as yet reported. There was a wide variety of procedures performed, including ventral hernia repair (n = 6), inguinal hernia repair (n = 4), colectomy (n = 3), anal fistula (n = 3), and one each of an exploratory laparotomy, an appendectomy, a closure of a dehiscence, a Hickman catheter placement, an open lysis of adhesions for small bowel obstruction (SBO), a laparoscopic lysis of adhesions for SBO, an open cholecystectomy, a laparoscopic cholecystectomy, and an excision of a round ligament endometrioma. There was only one death, which was in a patient with Type IV EDS who was the first patient in this series. He presented with a spontaneous sigmoid perforation treated by Hartmann procedure and went on to develop two more colon perforations and to die of sepsis. The morbidity included only two recurrent ventral hernias, a wound dehiscence, a wound hematoma, and recurrence of the anal fistula. Although patients with EDS pose significant healing problems, successful general surgical procedures can be performed in most patients. Among other recommendations, total avoidance of colon anastomoses and colostomies in favor of total abdominal colectomy and ileostomy and routine closure of the abdominal wall with mesh or retention sutures is advocated. Making the diagnosis is the key to having successful outcomes. Further recommendations on avoiding operation and on the conduct of the operation, if needed, are given.
- Abdominal compartment syndrome is an early, lethal complication of acute pancreatitis. [Journal Article]
- Am Surg 2013 Jun; 79(6):601-7.
Data defining the optimal management of abdominal compartment syndrome resulting from acute pancreatitis are lacking. We investigated the outcomes of patients with acute pancreatitis who underwent surgery for treatment of abdominal compartment syndrome at a tertiary referral center. An electronic database was searched to identify patients with acute pancreatitis who underwent laparotomy between January 1, 2000, and December 31, 2009, for treatment of abdominal compartment syndrome. Twelve patients underwent decompressive laparotomy for abdominal compartment syndrome. The median interval between onset of pancreatitis and laparotomy was 4.5 days. Nine patients underwent a laparotomy within seven days of onset of pancreatitis. As a result of cardiopulmonary instability, four decompressive laparotomies were performed in the intensive care unit. In 11 patients, cardiopulmonary improvement was observed. Statistically significant improvements were seen across multiple physiologic parameters. Despite this initial improvement, six patients (50%) died from multisystem organ failure. Two patients survived without need for pancreatic débridement. Abdominal compartment syndrome is an uncommon but likely underrecognized and highly lethal complication of acute pancreatitis that should be considered in patients who become critically ill early in the course of their pancreatitis. Prompt recognition and decompressive laparotomy may rescue some of these patients and does not mandate future débridement.