Why is this project important?
Patients who need surgery for cancer must balance the risks of undergoing and not undergoing surgery. The decision to undergo surgery is complicated by other existing conditions and diseases that the patient has.
Research studies have varied in their support of such delays to non-urgent, non-emergency operations. The conflicting evidence makes it difficult for hospitals to safely plan surgeries, especially because it is not clear why there is such a wide range of advice given.
It is important to evaluate the provision of timely and safely cancer surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic so that we know what is safe for patients.
What are we doing?
Our study attempts to clarify the relationship between surgery timing and cancer patient outcomes after surgery. In addition to patient outcomes, we will study the effect of surgery timing and patients’ SARS-CoV-2 status on outcomes related to hospital planning (e.g. patients’ length of stay in hospital and re-admissions after discharge).
Outputs and Impact
- We have published a letter in Anaesthesia outlining the need for causal inference methods to answer causal questions.