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Medicine Stats United Kingdom

Surgeries On Friday Are More Frequently Fatal 152

antdude writes "A British Medical Journal (BMJ) research report says that 'Surgeries on Friday Are More Frequently Fatal ... compared to those who opt for really bad Mondays, Britons who have a planned surgery on a Friday are 44 percent more likely to die. And the few patients who had a leisurely weekend surgery saw that number jump to 82 percent. The skeleton staff working on weekends might be to blame.'"
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Surgeries On Friday Are More Frequently Fatal

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  • Correlation (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 02, 2013 @12:44PM (#43889535)

    I would assume urgent surgeries have higher fatality rates, and they are the ones that may get crammed in on the weekends and Friday nights.

    That said, there might be some causal relation (but the study is just correctional), and it makes sense to look into it. However, currently there isn't enough evidence to make me try and avoid late week surgery.

  • by Trepidity ( 597 ) <delirium-slashdot@NOsPam.hackish.org> on Sunday June 02, 2013 @02:03PM (#43890091)

    The summary does make it sound like these are raw numbers being quoted (44% and 82% more likely to die), but you're right, the actual study, which the summary should've summarized better, gives something more specific:

    Compared with Monday, the adjusted odds of death for all elective surgical procedures was 44% and 82% higher if the procedures were carried out on Friday or at the weekend, respectively

    That is, they both 1) adjusted for (at least some) other factors that predict outcomes; and 2) limited their analysis to elective surgical procedures, i.e. they did not include emergency weekend surgeries.

  • Re:Car Analogy (Score:5, Interesting)

    by kermidge ( 2221646 ) on Monday June 03, 2013 @02:33AM (#43893759) Journal

    A friend worked for Oldsmobile in Lansing for over ten years, from line to supervisor to trouble-shooter. In those days ('70s) one could order a car and make a reservation to watch it being built. Friend said overall best build quality was on a Wednesday around 10:30 am.

    Monday - sobering up, where am I, where does this go
    Tuesday - relearn job, getting the hang of it by afternoon
    Wednesday - fired up and in the groove, but tiring after lunch
    Thursday - tired, bored, and sloppy
    Friday - you're kidding, right? It's freaking Friday, I'm out of here.

Solutions are obvious if one only has the optical power to observe them over the horizon. -- K.A. Arsdall