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New App Aids Surgeons in Predicting Hernias After Abdominal Surgery

Real-time risk score predicts incisional hernias following abdominal surgery

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THURSDAY, April 25, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A new app can predict the likelihood that a patient will develop an incisional hernia (IH) following abdominal surgery (AS), according to a study presented recently at the annual meeting of the American Surgical Association, held from April 11 to 13 in Dallas.

John P. Fischer, M.D., M.P.H., from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues retrospectively reviewed electronic medical record data from 29,739 patients undergoing AS in a single institution (2005 to 2016) to identify procedure-specific risk factors independently associated with IH.

The researchers found that IH occurred in 3.8 percent of patients at an average of 57.9 months following surgery. For patients experiencing IH, the combined cost of care was $62 million. Eight surgery-specific predictive models for IH occurrence were identified, all of which demonstrated excellent risk discrimination (C-statistic = 0.76 to 0.89). Colorectal (7.7 percent), vascular (5.2 percent), bariatric (4.8 percent), and transplant (4.5 percent) surgeries were most commonly associated with IH. The most common risk factors associated with an increased likelihood of developing IH were history of AS and smoking.

"Our tool presents the risk for each case at the point of care, giving surgeons and patients the chance to consider this outcome ahead of time and incorporate data into the decision-making process," Fischer said in a statement.

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