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Invited Commentary
October 17, 2019

Determining Operative Candidacy and Avoiding Regret

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Michigan Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • 2Center for Bioethics and Social Sciences in Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2019;145(12):1178-1179. doi:10.1001/jamaoto.2019.3021

Every surgical oncologist bristles when considering whether to offer an operation of questionable benefit. Patient, oncologic, and clinician factors all influence whether a surgery is indicated and how to effectively navigate the necessary preoperative counseling and preparation.1 The inherent risks and rewards of cancer surgery are magnified when the underlying physical fitness of the patient is in question. Even when dealing with technically feasible operations for potentially curable malignant tumors, a patient’s ability to recover and survive long enough to realize the benefit of surgery is critical.

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