Reasons for Cancellation of ENT, Head and Neck Surgeries in A Nigerian Teaching Hospital

Paul Oserhemhen Adobamen, Charles Imarengiaye


Background: A high rate of cancellation of surgeries has been observed in our hospital. This study therefore decided to determine the factors responsible for cancellations of ear, nose, throat, head and neck (ENTH&N) surgeries and recommend ways of preventing their occurrence.

Material & Methods: This prospective study was carried out at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin City, between January, 2009 and December, 2010. All patients that were booked for ENTH&N surgeries, but whose surgeries were not performed were enrolled into the study. The age, sex, diagnosis, intended surgery and reasons for cancellation were documented. The reasons and circumstances of cancellation were further scrutinised to determine the avoidable and non-avoidable reasons.

Results: In total, 113 patients; 70 male and 43 female patients, had their surgeries cancelled during the study period. The cancellation rate was 37.79%. There was a preponderance of young age individuals (0-10 years) with cancelled surgeries. Patients’ factors accounted for 61.1%, hospital factors 19.5%, surgeon/anaesthetist factors 17.7% and public factors 1.8% of cancellations.

Conclusion: Preventable factors are mainly responsible for cancellation of surgeries. Proper pre-operative evaluation and preparation of patients, appropriate supervision of trainees and improved communication between care providers and patients would ameliorate the rate of cancellation of scheduled surgical procedures.

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