Assessment of patient health status after elective surgery - adapted from the Journal of the America

Date: Oct, 1995

One aspect of outcomes research includes measurement of patient functioning and well-being after a medical or surgical intervention. Information gathered from the patient helps establish the value of the intervention. Temple and colleagues performed a prospective outcomes management study at an academic medical center to assess the value of four elective procedures.

The health status of patients was assessed before and after one of four elective procedures: cholecystectomy, hemorrhoidectomy, herniorrhaphy or Roux-en-Y gastric bypass for clinically severe obesity. Assessment was performed using a well-established health status questionnaire, the Short Form-36 (SF-36). The SF-36 measures eight health concepts, including limitations, body pain, general mental health, vitality and general perceptions of health.

Significant improvement was demonstrated in each health status category when preoperative status was compared with status at three and six months post-operatively. It was noted that patients undergoing the gastric bypass procedure generally had the lowest functional scores over the combined study time periods and in each of the eight categories.

The authors conclude that the demonstration of improved functional status and other outcomes data helps determine the appropriateness of elective interventions and helps consumers make more informed decisions about the health care they purchase. (Journal of the American College of Surgeons, July 1995, vol. 181, p. 17.)

COPYRIGHT 1995 American Academy of Family PhysiciansCOPYRIGHT 2004 Gale Group

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