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Need surgery? Should you avoid your surgeon’s birthday?

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January 22, 2021

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Comments

Dahra Perkins
January 30, 2021

I’d be interested in a study looking at the outcomes of surgeries performed the day AFTER a surgeon’s birthday. I would think that the effects of celebrating might be more impactful than the anticipation.

Robert Shmerling
February 04, 2021

The authors looked at that – the study states that they looked at surgeons’ birthdays vs. “other days” (which would include the day after the surgeon’s birthdays) and found worse outcomes on the birthdays. But, interestingly, the higher death rates in table 2 lumps birthdays with the day after.

Robert Shmerling
February 04, 2021

Hi, Dahra – The authors looked at that – the study states that they looked at surgeons’ birthdays vs. “other days” (which would include the day after the surgeon’s birthdays) and found worse outcomes on the birthdays. But, interestingly, the higher death rates in table 2 lumps birthdays with the day after.

Rapid
January 27, 2021

d it doesn’t seem practical for a person in need of emergency surgery to try to find out when their surgeon’s birthday is and, if it’s the day of the surgery, ask for another surgeon.

Then again, the case could be made that until we know more, perhaps emergency surgeons’ on-call schedules should be adjusted to avoid assignments on a surgeon’s birthday. The patients might have modestly better outcomes, and the surgeon might have something truly special on their birthday: a day off from sur

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