Because data published on waiting times are largely determined from questionnaire-type surveys, which generate inconclusive opinion-based results, the objective of this study was to provide a quantitative measure of the extent and variance of waiting times among 3 elective general surgery procedures
A prospective case study.
The Royal Alexandra Hospital, Edmonton.
From Feb. 1 to Mar. 15, 1999, all cases (90 patients) for each designated procedure--open or laparoscopic cholecystectomv for biliary colic or cholelithiasis, segmental resection or modified radical mastectomy for breast carcinoma and colon or rectal resection for colorectal carcinoma--were tabulated daily from the hospital elective operating lists. Data were prospectively acquired from individual surgeon offices (11 surgeons). Sixteen of the 90 patients were excluded, leaving 74 for analysis.
Time in days from initial referral by the general practitioner to the surgeon (T1), time in days from the initial visit with the surgeon to operation for patients requiring no further diagnostic work-up by the surgeon (T2A), and time in days from the initial visit with the surgeon to operation for patients requiring further diagnostic work-up (T2B).
The waiting period for patients who underwent non-cancer-related procedures (cholecystectomy) ranged from 83 to 106 days; patients with breast cancer waited an average of 24 (T1 + T2A) to 66 (T1 + T2B) days from the day of referral to the date of surgery and those with colorectal cancer waited an average of 32 (T1 + T2A) to 51 (T1 + T2B) days from the time of referral to operation (p
Comment In: Can J Surg. 2002 Feb;45(1):6-711838469