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In This Issue of JAMA Surgery
February 2014


JAMA Surg. 2014;149(2):105. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2013.3464

Recent evidence suggests that vitamin D status may be a modifiable risk factor for nosocomial infections. Quraishi and coauthors performed a retrospective analysis of 770 patients who underwent Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery from a single teaching hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, between 2007 and 2011, to determine whether preoperative 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels are associated with the risk of hospital-acquired infections. In this cohort of patients, a significant inverse association was observed between preoperative vitamin D status and the risk of postoperative infections.

Reducing mortality after major postoperative complications (failure to rescue [FTR]) may hold the potential to significantly decrease overall hospital mortality. Gonzalez and colleagues used national Medicare data to examine rates of mortality, complications, and FTR at high- and low-volume hospitals. Compared with low-volume hospitals, high-volume institutions have similar rates of complications but dramatically lower rates of FTR and postoperative mortality.