Evaluating the need for an integrated geriatric service in older general surgery patients

Natasha Abeysekera, Christian Mich, Adam Mahoney, Ashvini Abeysekera, Aleece MacPhail, Joseph Ibrahim, Matthew Jose, Richard Turner, Noha Ferrah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Background: Despite the success of an orthogeriatric model in improving outcomes of older patients, there is a paucity of evidence in general surgical disciplines. The aim of this project was to assess the viability of acute kidney injury (AKI) as an indicator of the care of older patients admitted under general surgery. Methods: A retrospective review of the medical records of patients aged 75 years and older admitted under general surgery between 1 July 2015 and 30 June 2018 at the Royal Hobart Hospital was conducted. Twenty randomly selected cases were reviewed by an expert panel to assess the preventability of AKI. Results: Of 314 patients, the most common diagnosis was small bowel obstruction. Less than half of all patients underwent a procedural intervention. There were 32 (10%) cases of AKI; 13 (4%) had pre-hospital and 19 (6%) had inpatient. Diabetes and bowel ischaemia were over-represented in patients with an AKI, otherwise there was no significant difference between the groups. Patients with an AKI were significantly more likely to die, require an unplanned intensive care unit admission and less likely to return to their original residence. Overall, the expert panel agreed that the AKI was foreseeable and mitigable. Conclusion: Our patients presented with diagnoses that often did not require surgical intervention but not infrequently experienced medical complications. These patients may benefit from a shared model of care and AKI could be a useful indicator to measure the efficiency of this service.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341–347
Number of pages7
JournalANZ Journal of Surgery
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


  • acute kidney injury
  • general surgery
  • geriatric
  • multidisciplinary

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