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Forum Name: Pneumonia

Question: Surgery complications for patients with Pneumonia


 luvher4u14 - Sun Aug 02, 2009 1:51 pm

My grandmother broke her pelvic bone Friday evening and was scheduled for a surgery this coming Monday. However during the first couple days of being admitted to the hospital, she had developed pneumonia, and the anesthesiologist at the hospital refuses to proceed with surgery on Monday.

What are the risks and possible complications for patients who have pneumonia and require surgery?
 Dr. A. De la Guerra - Fri Aug 14, 2009 9:39 pm

User avatar Hi luvher4u14,

Pneumonia is a frequent complication of hip fractures (joint between the pelvic bone and the head of the femur; the femur suffers the crack). Prolonged bed rest allows mucus to collect in the lungs with subsequent proliferation of germs, which originates lung infection (known as pneumonia).

Pneumonia is a major contraindication for surgery. Moreover, pneumonia after surgery is a severe complication because approximately 30% of patients die within 30 days following surgery. Also, the cause of death following a hip fracture is often due to blood clots, pneumonia, or infection.

For most patients with hip fractures the best treatment is early surgery (within 24 to 48 hours) followed by early mobilization, but for some patients precipitous surgery could increase the risk of complications.

To answer your question, the anesthesiologist is right; several studies found that postoperative deaths of patients with hip fractures were not related to the timing of surgery but to a poor physical condition. It is recommended to avoid early operation in patients with a severe disease who are not optimally prepared for surgery.

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