Mazzarello S, McIsaac DI, Montroy J, et al. Postoperative shared-care for patients undergoing non-cardiac surgery: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Can J Anaesth. 2019 Sep;66(9):1095-1105. doi: 10.1007/s12630-019-01433-5. Epub 2019 Jul 9. (Systematic review)

BACKGROUND: Collaborative ("shared-care") models of postoperative care improve outcomes in patients undergoing surgery for hip fracture. Despite being widely adopted, it is unclear if similar benefits of shared-care models exist for other at-risk surgical patient populations. Thus, we performed a systematic review to understand the impact of shared-care models.

METHODS: EMBASE, MEDLINE, CINAHL, and Cochrane Central Register databases were searched for prospective studies examining an in-hospital shared-care approach to postoperative management of adult non-cardiac surgery patients. The primary outcome was a composite of in-hospital mortality and mortality of up to 30 days. Secondary outcomes were long-term mortality (> 90 days) and hospital length of stay. Tertiary outcomes included quality of life and health utility measures. Risk of bias was assessed using Cochrane Collaboration tools.

RESULTS: Six thousand eight hundred and ninety-six citations were reviewed and four studies (n = 987 patients) met the inclusion criteria-two randomized-controlled trials (RCT, n = 729 patients) and two non-randomized-controlled trials (NRCT, n = 258 patients). All studies were conducted in the elective surgical setting. There was no association between shared-care and control groups for in-hospital mortality (Peto odds ratio, 1.76; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.65 to 4.80), or hospital length of stay (mean difference, -1.41; 95% CI, -3.18 to 0.35). Reporting of other outcomes was limited. Both RCTs were judged to be at high risk of bias for blinding and both NRCTs were judged to be at moderate risk of bias for reported outcomes.

CONCLUSION: Overall, there was limited high-quality evidence to evaluate the effect of postoperative shared-care. Well-designed interventional studies, perhaps targeting higher risk surgical populations, are needed.

REGISTRATION: PROSPERO (CRD42018094943); registered 16 May, 2018.

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Comments from MORE raters

Physician rater

Negative studies are very important. This one challenges an accepted dogma and must be publicized in order to maintain equilibrium of information.

Physician rater

This article is important because it emphasizes on the importance of multidisciplinary team postoperative to deliver the standard of care to patients. However, the studies are limited. Further studies need to be implemented and to include more parameters; for example, patients satisfaction, communication between teams, rate of postoperative complications,... etc.
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