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Invited Commentary
June 24, 2013

Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors and Surgery: To Hold or Not to Hold, That Is the Question: Comment on “Perioperative Use of Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors and Risks for Adverse Outcomes of Surgery”

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Clinical Trials Unit, Robarts Research Institute (Drs Mrkobrada and Hackam), Divisions of General Internal Medicine (Dr Mrkobrada) and Clinical Pharmacology (Dr Hackam), Departments of Medicine (Drs Mrkobrada and Hackam), Clinical Neurological Sciences (Dr Hackam), and Epidemiology and Biostatistics (Dr Hackam), Western University, London, Ontario, Canada.

JAMA Intern Med. 2013;173(12):1082-1083. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2013.718

More than 200 million major surgical operations are undertaken worldwide every year.1 Surgery is particularly prevalent in the developed world, with an astounding 21 397 operations per 100 000 persons performed in the United States in 2004.1 Surgery also carries significant risks. A recent international prospective cohort study of 15 133 adult patients undergoing noncardiac surgery demonstrated a 30-day mortality rate of 1.9% (95% CI, 1.7%-2.1%).2 This finding, coupled with the high global prevalence of surgery, suggests that postoperative mortality and morbidity are a significant public health concern.

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