Article of interest: Assessment of morbidity and mortality after esophagectomy using a modified frailty index

Hodari A, et al. Assessment of morbidity and mortality after esophagectomy using a modified frailty index. Ann Thorac Surg. 2013 Oct;96(4):1240-1245.

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Results: A total of 2,095 patients were included in the analysis. Higher frailty scores were associated with a statistically significant increase in morbidity and mortality. A frailty score of 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 had associated morbidity rates of 17.9% (142 of 795 patients), 25.1% (178 of 710 patients), 31.4% (126 of 401 patients), 34.4% (48 of 140 patients), 44.4% (16 of 36 patients), and 61.5% (8 of 13 patients), respectively. A frailty score of 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 had associated mortality rates of 1.8% (14 of 795 patients), 3.8% (27 of 710 patients), 4% (16 of 401 patients), 7.1% (10 of 140 patients), 8.3% (3 of 36 patients), and 23.1% (3 of 13 patients), respectively. When using multivariate logistic regression for mortality comparing age, functional status, prealbumin, emergency surgery, wound class, American Society of Anesthesiologists score, and sex, only age and frailty were statistically significant. The odds ratio was 31.84 for frailty (p = 0.015) and 1.05 (p = 0.001) for age.

Conclusions: Using a large national database, a modified frailty index was shown to correlate with post-esophagectomy morbidity and mortality. Such an index may be used to aid in improving risk assessment and patient selection for esophagectomy.

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