Predicting Postoperative Pulmonary Complications: Is It a Real Problem?

Pamela Williams-Russo, Mary E. Charlson, C. Ronald MacKenzie, Jeffrey P. Gold, G. Tom Shires

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

80 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

To identify predictors of postoperative pulmonary complications, a population of 278 patients, mainly hypertensive and diabetic patients undergoing elective general surgery was studied; 60% of the patients underwent abdominal surgery. Of the 278 patients, 6% had postoperative pulmonary complications: 3% had radiographic evidence of infiltrates or segmental atelectasis and 3% had clinical evidence of atelectasis. Among the two thirds of patients undergoing abdominal surgery, only patients with underlying asthma or chronic bronchitis were at increased risk. Generally, patients with better exercise tolerance by self-report, walking distance, or cardiovascular classification had lower rates. Pulmonary function tests did not help to delineate patients at higher risk of postoperative pulmonary complications. Simple clinical information provided as much data about the patients’ risk as pulmonary function tests. Many of these complications occurred in patients who sustained other types of postoperative morbidity, suggesting that predicting and preventing postoperative cardiac morbidity may be the best approach to reducing postoperative pulmonary morbidity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1209-1213
Number of pages5
JournalArchives of Internal Medicine
Volume152
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1992

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Lung
Pulmonary Atelectasis
Respiratory Function Tests
Morbidity
Exercise Tolerance
Chronic Bronchitis
Self Report
Walking
Asthma
Population

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine

Cite this

Predicting Postoperative Pulmonary Complications : Is It a Real Problem? / Williams-Russo, Pamela; Charlson, Mary E.; MacKenzie, C. Ronald; Gold, Jeffrey P.; Shires, G. Tom.

In: Archives of Internal Medicine, Vol. 152, No. 6, 06.1992, p. 1209-1213.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Williams-Russo, Pamela ; Charlson, Mary E. ; MacKenzie, C. Ronald ; Gold, Jeffrey P. ; Shires, G. Tom. / Predicting Postoperative Pulmonary Complications : Is It a Real Problem?. In: Archives of Internal Medicine. 1992 ; Vol. 152, No. 6. pp. 1209-1213.
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