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Overlapping surgeries: defining the 'critical portions' of the procedure
Department of Urology, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Apr  2019 (Vol.  26, Issue  2, Pages( 9694 - 9698)
PMID: 31012832


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    An important aspect of overlapping surgery is to determine the 'critical portion' of an operation. Currently, there are no guidelines that standardize the critical portions of common urologic procedures. We sought to determine the relationship between the critical portions of common urologic operations as defined by the primary surgeon compared to the trainee at a single academic medical center.


    In an open-ended survey of the Urology Department at Thomas Jefferson University, attending surgeons and urology residents, were asked to list five of their most commonly performed surgeries and subsequently identify what they defined as the critical portion for each. Responses were examined for surgeon-trainee congruence. Response agreement was defined as identifying key words that provided reasonable evidence that the responders were referring to identical portions of the case.


    Nine residents and eight attending physicians provided 67 and 63 responses, respectively, encompassing 28 different procedures. Six procedures were chosen for further analysis based on high volume of responses. Overall, of the 67 resident-reported critical portions, 32 (47.8%) were in agreement with attending-reported critical portions. Year of training in residency was not a predictor of surgeon-trainee agreement.


    External pressures from the public and lawmakers alike may demand that providers be present during all 'critical portions' of a procedure. Our study shows that the understanding of critical portions of an operation is often incongruent between surgeons and trainees. Critical portions of all procedures should be established by the surgical team in order to accurately schedule overlapping surgeries