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HPB Surg. 2008;2008:190914. doi: 10.1155/2008/190914. Epub 2009 Feb 25.

Variation in annual volume at a university hospital does not predict mortality for pancreatic resections.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94143-0104, USA.


Annual volume of pancreatic resections has been shown to affect mortality rates, prompting recommendations to regionalize these procedures to high-volume hospitals. Implementation has been difficult, given the paucity of high-volume centers and the logistical hardships facing patients. Some studies have shown that low-volume hospitals achieve good outcomes as well, suggesting that other factors are involved. We sought to determine whether variations in annual volume affected patient outcomes in 511 patients who underwent pancreatic resections at the University of California, San Francisco between 1990 and 2005. We compared postoperative mortality and complication rates between low, medium, or high volume years, designated by the number of resections performed, adjusting for patient characteristics. Postoperative mortality rates did not differ between high volume years and medium/low volume years. As annual hospital volume of pancreatic resections may not predict outcome, identification of actual predictive factors may allow low-volume centers to achieve excellent outcomes.

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