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Journal and News Scan

Source: The Carnegie Mellon Robotics Institute
Author(s): Howie Choset

The Flex System is a flexible endoscopic system that enables surgeons to access and visualize hard-to-reach anatomical locations. The system thus promises to extend the benefits of minimally invasive surgery – shorter hospital stays and recovery times – to a broader population of patients. The company initially has targeted the system for use in head and neck surgery, operating through the mouth.

Source: Itunes
Author(s): Doctor's Guide Publishing Limited

This is a free app that collates thousands of new stories and abstracts from peer reviewed journal and news organisations. It also has a forum area and has cardiology and surgery sections. 

Nothing to do with CTSNet, but it is free so might be worth a look 

Source: World Journal for Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery
Author(s): Nguyenvu Nguyen, Jeffrey P. Jacobs, Joseph A. Dearani, Samuel Weinstein, William M. Novick, Marshall L. Jacobs, Jeremy Massey, Sara K. Pasquali, Henry L. Walters III, David Drullinsky, Giovanni Stellin, and Christo I. Tchervenkov

This is an interesting article on the provision of pediatric cardiac surgery in the developing world. 

Source: UWTV on youtube
Author(s): Larry Dean , Gabriel Aldea

Dr. Gabriel Aldea outlines the latest in surgical techniques to repair the irregular rhythms, rapid heart beats, blood clots and ineffective heart muscle contractions associated with atrial fibrillation. He also discusses the restoration of normal cardiac function using catheters, pacemakers and gives insight on the surgical MAZE technique and innovations in ultrasound, laser and cryothermal tools.

Source: The Annals of Thoracic Surgery
Author(s): Richard A. Hopkins, Gary K. Lofland, Jennifer Marshall, Diana Connelly,Gayathri Acharya, Pamela Dennis, Richard Stroup, Chris McFall, James E. O'Brien

In this observational study, the utility of decellularized allogeneic pulmonary artery patches for pulmonary arterioplasty was evaluated in 108 patients. No device failures or adverse events were detected. An historical comparison cohort in whom conventional materials were used experienced a 14% failure rate.

Source: Annals of Thoracic Surgery
Author(s): Fabian A. Kari, Friedhelm Beyersdorf, Elizabeth H. Stephens, Prisca Peter, Bartosz Rylski, Maximilian Russe, Philipp Blanke, Matthias Siepe
This report summarizes outcomes in 40 reoperated patients (mean age 33 years) of an original 122 who underwent initial aortic root surgery for Marfans. Reoperations took place a mean of nearly 10 years later. 5 and 10 year survivals after second operations were 80% and 66%. Open and stent grafts procedures did not appear to have different outcomes. Acute dissection at the time of first operation was the only strong predictor of mortality.
Source: Annals of Thoracic Surgery
Author(s): Terry Shih, Justin B. Dimick
Quality metrics based on administrative databases are sometimes unreliable. This study examined data from nearly 245,000 Medicare patients undergoing CABG to determine the reliability of 30-day readmission rates and whether that metric is an appropriate indicator of hospital quality. The median readmission rate was 17.6%, but less than half lf the rate was attributed to the true signal, the rest being measurement noise. Less than 5% of hospitals had sufficient CABG volume to achieve reliable measurement of readmission rates.
Source: JAMA
Author(s): JM Rohde, DE Dimcheff, N Blumberg, S Saint, KM Langa, L Kuhn, A Hickner, MAM Rogers.

This meta-analysis of 18 randomized trials investigated the risk of infection related to blood transfusions given according to liberal or restrictive criteria. The restrictive strategy (Hgb <7) was associated with an 18% reduction in the risk of serious infection (11.8% vs 16.9%). The effects were most pronounced in patients with sepsis and in those undergoing orthopedic surgery. No difference was evident among patients with heart disease, critical illness, or GI bleeding.

Source: New England Journal of Medicine
Author(s): DH Adams and others for the US CoreValve Clinical Investigators
Transcatheter AVR (TAVR) was compared to surgical AVR for treatment of aortic stenosis in 795 high risk patients. TAVR was associated with a decreased risk of death at 1 year (14% vs 19%; p<0.04). This was likely due to a reduction in the risk of adverse cardiovascular and cerebrovascular events.
Source: New England Journal of Medicine
Author(s): PJ Devereaux and other for the POISE-2 Investigators
This randomized trial including more than 10,000 patients undergoing noncardiac surgery evaluated the use of perioperative aspirin in patients at increased risk for vascular complications. The end points were death or MI. The end points occurred in equal numbers (7%) in both groups. Bleeding complications were more common in the aspirin group (4.6% vs 3.8%).