Neurosurgeries performed late in the day increase complication risk

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A study, published in Neurosurgery, examined the effect of surgical start time on morbidity and mortality rates of neurosurgery patients.

Researchers performed a retrospective cohort study, analyzing 15,807 patients who underwent neurological surgery between Jan. 1, 2007 and Aug. 1, 2014, at a healthcare facility. Self-reported morbidity and mortality reports created by faculty and resident neurosurgeons showed there were 785 complications.

The study shows the odds of complication increased by more than 50 percent for procedures with start times between 9 p.m. and 7 a.m. The only statistically significant factor that predicted complication severity was whether the operation was emergent compared to elective.

Thus, patients who undergo operations with start times later in the day are at an increased risk of developing morbidity compared to patients with start times earlier in the day, study authors concluded.

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