Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2008 Aug;136(2):494-499.e8. doi: 10.1016/j.jtcvs.2007.08.081.

Quality improvement program decreases mortality after cardiac surgery.

Author information

Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Carolinas Heart Institute, Carolinas Medical Center, Charlotte, NC 28203, USA.



This study investigated the effects of a quality improvement program and goal-oriented, multidisciplinary protocols on mortality after cardiac surgery.


Patients were divided into two groups: those undergoing surgery (coronary artery bypass grafting, isolated valve surgery, or coronary artery bypass grafting and valve surgery) after establishment of the multidisciplinary quality improvement program (January 2005-December 2006, n = 922) and those undergoing surgery before institution of the program (January 2002-December 2003, n = 1289). Logistic regression and propensity score analysis were used to adjust for imbalances in patients' preoperative characteristics.


Operative mortality was lower in the quality improvement group (2.6% vs 5.0%, P < .01). Unadjusted odds ratio was 0.5 (95% confidence interval 0.3-0.8, P < .01); propensity score-adjusted odds ratio was 0.6 (95% confidence interval 0.4-0.99, P = .04). In multivariable analysis, diabetes (P < .01), chronic renal insufficiency (P = .05), previous cardiovascular operation (P = .04), congestive heart failure (P < .01), unstable angina (P < .01), age older than 75 years (P < .01), prolonged pump time (P < .01), and prolonged operation (P = .05) emerged as independent predictors of higher mortality after cardiac surgery, whereas quality improvement program (P < .01) and male sex (P = .03) were associated with lower mortality. Mortality decline was less pronounced in patients with than without diabetes (P = .04).


Application of goal-directed, multidisciplinary protocols and a quality improvement program were associated with lower mortality after cardiac surgery. This decline was less prominent in patients with diabetes, and focused quality improvement protocols may be required for this subset of patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center