Importance of operating room case scheduling on analyses of observed reductions in surgical site infections from the purchase and installation of capital equipment in operating rooms

Franklin Dexter, Johannes Ledolter, Richard H. Epstein, Randy W. Loftus

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: We review the impact of the consequences of operating room (OR) management decision making on power analyses for observational studies of surgical site infections (SSIs) among patients receiving care in ORs with interventions versus without interventions involving physical changes to ORs. Examples include ventilation systems, bactericidal lighting, and physical alterations to ORs. Methods: We performed a narrative review of operating room management and surgical site infection articles. We used 10-years of operating room data to estimate parameters for use in statistical power analyses. Results: Creating pivot tables or monthly control charts of SSI per case by OR and comparing among ORs with or without intervention is not recommended. This approach has low power to detect a difference in SSI rates among the ORs with or without the intervention. The reason is that appropriate OR case scheduling decision making causes risk factors for SSI to differ among ORs, even when stratifying by surgical specialty. Such risk factors include case duration, urgency, and American Society of Anesthesiologists’ Physical Status. Instead, analyze SSI controlling for the OR, where the patient had surgery, and matching patients using these variables is preferable. With α = 0.05, 600 cases per OR, 5 intervention ORs, and 5 or 1 control patients for each intervention patient, reasonable power (≅94% or 78%, respectively) can be achieved to detect reductions (3.6% to 2.4%) in the incidence of SSI between ORs with or without the intervention. Conclusions: By using this matched cohort design, the effect of the purchase and installation of capital equipment in ORs on SSI can be evaluated meaningfully.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)566-572
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Infection Control
Volume48
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2020

Keywords

  • Matched cohort study
  • Operating room management
  • Pivot table
  • Surgical site infection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases

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