“Frail Older Patients Struggle After Even Minor Operations” – The New York Times

These patients are not aware of the true risks, and surgeons aren’t telling them, new research suggests.

older surgeryJames Steinberg

by Paula Span

“The patient, a man in his 70s, had abdominal pain serious enough to send him to a VA Pittsburgh Healthcare hospital. Doctors there found the culprit: a gallstone had inflamed his pancreas.

“Dr. Daniel Hall, a surgeon who met with the patient, explained that pancreatitis can be fairly mild, as in this case, or severe enough to cause death. Recovery usually requires five to seven days, some of them in a hospital, during which the stone passes or a doctor uses a flexible scope to remove the blockage.

“But ‘because it can be life-threatening, after patients recover, we usually take out the gall bladder to prevent its happening again,’ Dr. Hall said.”

Read this article in its entirety at The New York Times.

 

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