Monthly Archives: March 2015

The price of delirium: New study finds nearly half of patients have delirium

OrthopedicsDelirium associated with 7.4 additional hospital days and $8,000 more in hospital costs

A new study presented at the 2015 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) found that 48 percent of hip fracture patients, age 65 and older, had delirium, or acute confusion, before, during and after surgery (perioperative), resulting in significantly longer hospital stays and higher costs for care.Approximately 300,000 Americans are hospitalized with hip fractures each year. The risk is particularly high in post-menopausal women who face an increased risk for osteoporosis, a disease that diminishes bone mass and increases fracture risk. Delirium is common among older hip fracture patients, and multiple studies have found that patients with postoperative delirium are more likely to have complications, including infections, and less likely to return to their pre-injury level of function. Delirium patients also are more frequently placed in nursing homes following surgery, and have an increased rate of mortality.

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Patients may not benefit from sedatives prior to surgery, study suggests

ALL Surgery_Plastic_Orthopedic_Cosmetic_Neurosurgery_ETCPrior to undergoing a surgical procedure, many patients are prescribed sedatives to help reduce stress and anxiety before and after surgery. But a new study published inJAMA has questioned the benefits of these sedatives after finding they may not improve patients’ experience and may even do more harm than good.Benzodiazepines are a class of drugs commonly used to help reduce a patient’s perioperative stress or anxiety – the stress and anxiety experienced before and after surgery.However, the study researchers – including Dr. Axel Maurice-Szamburski of the Hôpital de la Timone Adulte in Marseille, France – note that benzodiazepines have been associated with a number of side effects, including drowsiness, insomnia and cognitive impairment.While benzodiazepines are deemed effective for reducing anxiety, the researchers note there is insufficient evidence to conclude their use leads to a better perioperative experience for patients.
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