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In American journal of surgery

BACKGROUND : Delayed recognition of decompensation and failure-to-rescue on surgical wards are major sources of preventable harm. This review assimilates and critically evaluates available evidence and identifies opportunities to improve surgical ward safety.

DATA SOURCES : Fifty-eight articles from Cochrane Library, EMBASE, and PubMed databases were included.

CONCLUSIONS : Only 15-20% of patients suffering ward arrest survive. In most cases, subtle signs of instability often occur prior to critical illness and arrest, and underlying pathology is reversible. Coarse risk assessments lead to under-triage of high-risk patients to wards, where surveillance for complications depends on time-consuming manual review of health records, infrequent patient assessments, prediction models that lack accuracy and autonomy, and biased, error-prone decision-making. Streaming electronic heath record data, wearable continuous monitors, and recent advances in deep learning and reinforcement learning can promote efficient and accurate risk assessments, earlier recognition of instability, and better decisions regarding diagnosis and treatment of reversible underlying pathology.

Loftus Tyler J, Tighe Patrick J, Filiberto Amanda C, Balch Jeremy, Upchurch Gilbert R, Rashidi Parisa, Bihorac Azra


Cardiac arrest, Decompensation, Deterioration, Machine learning, Surgery, Ward