Minimally-invasive approach to emergent colorectal surgery in aging adults: A report from the Surgical Care Outcomes Assessment Program


      • Less than ¼ of emergent colorectal cases are approached minimally invasively.
      • MIS use in emergency CRS was incrementally lower in older adults, no matter the time of day.
      • MIS was associated with improved outcomes in all patients, including older adults.



      Despite known benefits of minimally invasive surgery(MIS) in elective settings, MIS use in emergency colorectal surgery(CRS) is limited. Older adults are more likely to require emergent CRS, and MIS is used less frequently with increasing age.


      A retrospective cohort was constructed of emergent CRS cases performed between 2011 and 2019. Discharge(DC) disposition, adverse events, and length of stay(LOS) between MIS and open surgery were compared and stratified by age. Adjustment was made for selected confounders using inverse probability weighting.


      Of 6913 emergent CRS cases across 50 hospitals, 1616(23%) were approached MIS. MIS cases were more likely [OR(95%CI)] to DC home [<65yo:1.7(1.3,2.2); 65–74:1.5(1.1,1.9); 75+:1.2(0.9,1.5)] and have fewer adverse events [<65yo:0.6(0.5,0.8); 65–74:0.7(0.5,0.9); 75+:0.7(0.5,0.9)]. LOS was shorter [Mean difference in days(95%CI)] [<65yo: 2.2(-2.9,-1.4); 65–74: 0.9(-2.7,1.0); 75+: 0.7(-1.7,0.2)].


      MIS in emergent CRS is associated with increased DC to home, fewer adverse events, and shorter LOS. Benefits persisted with age after adjustment, suggesting an opportunity for improved MIS delivery in older adults.


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