Farwell et al identified risk factors for perioperative complications in patients undergoing head and neck surgery. These can help to identify a patient who may require more aggressive management after surgery. The authors are from the University of Washington in Seattle.

Independent risk factors for medical or surgical complications

(1) anesthesia time >= 8 hours (risk 10% if < 8 hours, 50% for 8 to 11.9 hours, 66% for 12 to 15.9 hours, and 100% for 16+ hours)

(2) history of hepatitis

(3) large volume of intraoperative fluid administration (>= 6 liters)


Risk factors identified on univariate analysis:

(1) cancer surgery

(2) preoperative radiation therapy

(3) flap reconstruction

(4) recent smoking (within past 6 weeks)

(5) preoperative gastrostomy

(6) blood transfusion

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