Unplanned overnight admissions in day-case arthroscopic shoulder surgery
The majority of arthroscopic shoulder procedures can be safely performed as day-case surgery. However, despite better pain control and preoperative assessment; some patients end with unplanned overnight admission. The aim of this study was to investigate the reasons behind unplanned admissions of patients undergoing day-case arthroscopic shoulder surgery.
A retrospective review of 242 consecutive cases of arthroscopic shoulder surgery performed by the senior author over a period of two years (2007–2008) was carried out. Twenty cases were planned admissions and were therefore excluded. 222 cases were included, of which 40 (18%) were unplanned overnight admissions.
Documented causes for overnight stay included abnormal post-operative observations, pain and wound ooze. The age of patients who stayed overnight was significantly higher (p = 0.006). The difference in ASA grade between both groups was less marked but still statistically significant (p = 0.031). More complex procedures, such as rotator cuff repair, were more likely to result in unplanned overnight admission (p < 0.001). The experience of the anaesthetist and administration of interscalene nerve block were not significantly different between the two groups. However, patients anesthetised by less experienced anaesthetists were less likely to receive an interscalene nerve block (p = 0.016).
In conclusion; higher patient age, higher ASA grade and more complex arthroscopic procedures are significant risk factors for unplanned overnight admissions in day-case arthroscopic shoulder surgery.