Detecting Major Complications and Death After Emergency Abdominal Surgery Using the Surgical Apgar Score: A Retrospective Analysis in a Caribbean Setting [Turk J Anaesthesiol Reanim]
Turk J Anaesthesiol Reanim. Ahead of Print: TARD-65872 | DOI: 10.5152/TJAR.2019.65872  

Detecting Major Complications and Death After Emergency Abdominal Surgery Using the Surgical Apgar Score: A Retrospective Analysis in a Caribbean Setting

Keevan Singh, Seetharaman Hariharan
Anaesthesia and Intensive Care Unit, Department of Clinical Surgical Sciences, University of the West Indies, St Augustine, Trinidad

Objective: The Surgical Apgar Score (SAS) is a simple 10-point scoring system that has been shown to be predictive of major postoperative complications and death after surgery. We evaluated the predictive ability of this score in a cohort of patients undergoing emergency abdominal surgery in a Caribbean tertiary hospital.
Methods: The SAS was calculated retrospectively from the anaesthesia records of all patients undergoing emergency abdominal surgery during a 12-month period. The postoperative surgical records of these patients were then examined for the presence of major complications and death. The association between the SAS and outcomes was tested using binary logistic regression, and the SAS discriminatory ability was determined from the receiver-operating curve (ROC) analysis.
Results: Of the 220 patients studied, 72 (33%) suffered an in-hospital major complication or death. The highest complication rate occurred in the low-scoring groups, with 68% of those scoring <4 being affected. Low-scoring patients (<4) had four times the risk of major complications when compared to higher-scoring groups (relative risk [RR], 4.21; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.5-7.3; p<0.001). The odds ratio (OR) for major complications or death per unit increase in the SAS was 0.58 (95% CI, 0.47-0.72; p<0.001). The c-statistic of the SAS for predicting major complications or death was 0.71 (95% CI, 0.68-0.73; p<0.0001).
Conclusion: The SAS is a simple 10-point score that can be used in patients undergoing emergency surgery in a Caribbean setting to help identify those that are at a higher risk of postoperative complications. Due to its ease in calculation, it can be added to other commonly used criteria to help triage the postoperative patient.

Keywords: Anaesthesia, intensive care, risk, surgery




Corresponding Author: Keevan Singh, Trinidad and Tobago


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