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March 1, 2004

Surgeon Experience and Ruptured Aortic Aneurysm Repair

Arch Surg. 2004;139(3):343. doi:10.1001/archsurg.139.3.343-b

It is becoming increasingly well recognized that surgeon experience and patient factors may play an important role in predicting outcomes in such clinical scenarios as ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysms. Although it seems intuitive that surgeons with more experience would have better results, this has not been consistently shown with ruptured aneurysms.

A recent article1 in the ARCHIVES describes the experience of a single surgeon with 101 patients with ruptured aneurysms during a 21-year period. Although the results were commendable, the authors failed to show improved results with increasing surgeon experience. Possible explanations include inequality of the patients in the time periods as compared with respect to hemodynamic stability and other clinical parameters.