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Implementation of an Acute Care Surgery Service Facilitates Modern Clinical Practice Guidelines for Gallstone Pancreatitis. J Am Coll Surg 2015 Nov;221(5):975-81



Pubmed ID




Scopus ID

2-s2.0-84945457985 (requires institutional sign-in at Scopus site)   24 Citations


BACKGROUND: Current practice guidelines for management of gallstone pancreatitis (GSP) recommend early cholecystectomy for patient stabilization and bile duct clearance, preferably at index admission. Historically, this has been difficult to achieve due to lack of emergency surgical resources. We investigated whether implementation of an acute care surgery (ACS) model would allow better adherence to current practice guidelines for GSP.

STUDY DESIGN: A retrospective review was conducted of all patients admitted with the diagnosis of GSP to 2 tertiary care university teaching hospitals from January 2002 to October 2013. Diagnosis was confirmed on review of clinical, biochemical, and radiographic criteria. Patients were divided into pre-ACS (2002 to 2009) and post-ACS (2010 to 2013) eras. Only 1 of the 2 hospitals implemented an ACS service in the latter era. Data were collected on demographics, admissions, cholecystectomy timing, and emergency department visits.

RESULTS: Before implementation of an ACS service, the rate of index cholecystectomy was 3% at both hospital sites. The rate of index cholecystectomy increased significantly with the addition of ACS, from 2.4% to 67% (p < 0.001). The presence of an ACS team was highly predictive of index cholecystectomy (odds ratio = 10.4; 95% CI 2.0 to 55.1). Patients who did not undergo cholecystectomy during the index admission had an overall readmission rate of 24.9% at both sites. In the ACS hospital, repeat emergency department visits decreased from 24.8% to 8.3% (p < 0.001) and readmission rate decreased from 16.8% to 7.3% (p = 0.04) in the pre-and post-ACS eras, respectively.

CONCLUSIONS: Implementation of an ACS service resulted in a higher rate of index cholecystectomy and decreased emergency department visits and readmissions for biliary disease, and allowed for increased adherence to clinical practice guidelines for GSP.

Author List

Murphy PB, Paskar D, Parry NG, Racz J, Vogt KN, Symonette C, Leslie K, Mele TS


Patrick Murphy MD Assistant Professor in the Surgery department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Emergency Service, Hospital
Guideline Adherence
Length of Stay
Middle Aged
Operative Time
Patient Admission
Patient Readmission
Practice Guidelines as Topic
Retrospective Studies
Surgery Department, Hospital