Objective. - To evaluate the reasons (indications) for and immediate intraoperative surgical results (outcomes) associated with pathology intraoperative consultation. Design. - In 1992 and 1993, surgeons collaborated with pathologists in 472 voluntarily participating institutions from the United States (462), Canada (7), Australia (2), and New Zealand (1) in a study jointly sponsored by the College of American Pathologists and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Pathologists selected 20 consecutive intraoperative consultations and assembled a cover letter, a checklist questionnaire, and a copy of the corresponding surgical pathology report, all of which were sent to the surgeon(s) for retrospective evaluation. Participants. - The study was distributed to participants in the College of American Pathologists voluntary Q-Probes quality improvement and Surgical Pathology Performance Improvement programs and to Canadian and Australian hospitals with more than 200 beds. Results. - Evaluation of 9164 cases established the five most common indications for intraoperative consultation: (1) establish or confirm diagnosis to determine type or extent of operation (51%), (2) confirm adequacy of margins (16%), (3) confirm nature of tissue to direct sampling for immediate culture or other laboratory study (10%), (4) expedite obtaining diagnosis to inform family or patient (8%), and (5) confirm sufficient tissue submitted to secure diagnosis in permanent section (8%). The information provided by the intraoperative consultation resulted in changed surgical procedures that were either modified, terminated, or newly initiated in 47%, 30%, 6%, 9%, and 28% of cases, corresponding respectively to each of the above five common indications. Rarely cited reasons for intraoperative consultation were to expedite obtaining diagnosis for surgeon's knowledge (3%), to facilitate patient management, other professional communication or discharge planning prior to permanent section availability (3%), academic protocol (<1%), and consultation not needed or no reason for request (<1%). Conclusions. - This multi-institutional, interdisciplinary database confirms that pathology intraoperative consultations, regardless of the initial indications, influence immediate patient care decisions, resulting in changed surgical procedures in an average of 39% of all operative cases.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Archives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine|
|State||Published - Jan 1996|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine
- Medical Laboratory Technology