Surgeons’ skills may improve with age, and male and female surgeons perform equally well, a recent U.S. study finds. Medicare patients’ risk of dying in the month after an operation steadily fell as their surgeon’s age increased, Dr. Yusuke Tsugawa of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA in Los Angeles and colleagues report in The BMJ.
There was little difference between mortality among patients of male or female doctors, with one exception. “Patients treated by female surgeons in their 50s had the lowest mortality across all groups,” Tsugawa told Reuters Health in a telephone interview. Among the roughly 892,200 patients treated by nearly 46,000 surgeons, the overall risk of dying within 30 days of a surgery was 6.4 percent. After adjusting for other factors, mortality rates were 6.6 percent with surgeons under age 40; 6.5 percent with surgeons in their 40s; 6.4 percent with surgeons in their 50s and 6.3 percent for those 60 and older.
Source: Anne Harding, Reuters [5/4/18]
Courtesy of Barry Block, editor of PM News.
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