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Abstracts: In Other Archives Journals
Nov/Dec 2009

Abstracts: In Other Archives Journals

Arch Facial Plast Surg. 2009;11(6):428-429. doi:
Archives of Ophthalmology
Orbital Arteriovenous Malformations

To present the clinical features, management, and outcomes in a series of patients with orbital arteriovenous malformations (AVMs).


Clinical records of patients with orbital AVMs confirmed using angiography were reviewed as a retrospective, noncomparative, interventional case series.


Eight patients (3 women and 5 men) with unilateral AVMs and a mean age of 39 years (median, 36.5 years; range, 26-70 years) were reviewed. Findings existed for an average of 11.2 years before diagnosis and included periocular mass (7 patients, 88%); periocular edema, pulsation/bruit, proptosis, episcleral congestion, and previous trauma (4 patients each, 50%); elevated intraocular pressure (3 patients, 38%); pain and reduced visual acuity (2 patients each, 25%); and restriction of extraocular movements, and diplopia (1 patient each, 12%). All of the patients except 1 underwent surgical resection, with 3 (38%) receiving preoperative embolization of feeder vessels; all of the patients had initial resolution of manifestations after treatment.


Angiography is essential for diagnosis and for planning the management of orbital AVMs. Treatment depends on patient-specific features and includes observation, embolization, and surgical excision or combined preoperative embolization/excision. Given their vascular nature, the main cause of poor management outcomes is perioperative hemorrhage. Outcomes after a multidisciplinary approach are good, with few recurrences reported at follow-up.

Archives of Neurology
Communicating Clinical Trial Results to Research Participants

Communicating clinical trial results to research participants is seldom accomplished in a timely or an effective manner.


To evaluate the effectiveness of a plan to communicate results in an industry-sponsored randomized controlled trial for Huntington disease.

Design, Setting, and Participants

Postal survey to research participants at 28 of 41 research sites (including 217 of 316 participants) in Canada and the United States.


We communicated trial results by means of (1) a media release from the investigators within a day after a sponsor-issued press release; (2) a subsequent telephone call from the site staff to the participants; and (3) a conference call for research participants 2 weeks after the results were released.

Main Outcome Measures

Source and timing for learning study results and satisfaction with their communication.


Of the 217 study participants surveyed, 114 (52.5%) responded. Most (73.1%) first learned the study results from their site's telephone call, and 46.3% learned the results within 1 day of the sponsor's press release. Participants reported high or complete satisfaction with the site telephone call (89.3%) and conference call (82.1%) but relatively low satisfaction with the sponsor's press release (50.0%). Most respondents reported good understanding of the risks and benefits of the experimental treatment and the next steps for their participation.


Surveyed research participants learned of the clinical trial results soon after public release and highly valued the personalized and accurate communication efforts by the study investigators.

Archives of Surgery
Benchmarking Surgical Incident Reports Using a Database and a Triage System to Reduce Adverse Outcomes

To study the profile of incidents affecting quality outcomes after surgery by developing a usable operating room and perioperative clinical incident report database and a functional electronic classification, triage, and reporting system. Previously, incident reports after surgery were handled on an individual, episodic basis, which limited the ability to perceive actuarial patterns and meaningfully improve outcomes.

Design, Setting, and Participants

Clinical incident reports were experientially generated in the second largest health care system in New York City. Data were entered into a functional classification system organized into 16 categories, and weekly triage meetings were held to electronically review and report summaries on 40 to 60 incident reports per week. System development and deployment reviewed 1041 reports after 19 693 operative procedures. During the next 4 years, 3819 additional reports were generated from 83 988 operative procedures and were reported electronically to the appropriate departments.

Main Outcome Measures

Number of incident reports generated annually.


A significant decrease in volume-adjusted clinical incident reports occurred (from 53 to 39 reports per 1000 procedures) from 2001 to 2005 (P < .001). Reductions in incident reports were observed for ambulatory conversions (74% reduction), wasted implants (65%), skin breakdown (64%), complications in the operating room (42%), laparoscopic conversions (32%), and cancellations (23%) as a result of data-focused process and clinical interventions. Six of 16 categories of incident reports accounted for more than 88% of all incident reports.


These data suggest that effective review, communication, and summary feedback of clinical incident reports can produce a statistically significant decrease in adverse outcomes.

Utility of the Surgical Apgar Score: Validation in 4119 Patients

To confirm the utility of a 10-point Surgical Apgar Score to rate surgical outcomes in a large cohort of patients.


Using electronic intraoperative records, we calculated Surgical Apgar Scores during a period of 2 years (July 1, 2003, through June 30, 2005).


Major academic medical center.


Systematic sample of 4119 general and vascular surgery patients enrolled in the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program surgical outcomes database at a major academic medical center.

Main Outcome Measures

Incidence of major postoperative complications and/or death within 30 days of surgery.


Of 1441 patients with scores of 9 to 10, 72 (5.0%) developed major complications within 30 days, including 2 deaths (0.1%). By comparison, among 128 patients with scores of 4 or less, 72 developed major complications (56.3%; relative risk, 11.3; 95% confidence interval, 8.6-14.8; P < .001), of whom 25 died (19.5%; relative risk, 140.7; 95% confidence interval, 33.7-587.4; P < .001). The 3-variable score achieves C statistics of 0.73 for major complications and 0.81 for deaths.


The Surgical Apgar Score provides a simple, immediate, objective means of measuring and communicating patient outcomes in surgery, using data routinely available in any setting. The score can be effective in identifying patients at higher- and lower-than-average likelihood of major complications and/or death after surgery and may be useful for evaluating interventions to prevent poor outcomes.