BACKGROUND: Systemic inflammation in patients with malignant disease has been associated with increased risk of cardiovascular events. The pro-inflammatory perturbations following surgical trauma may further promote adverse perioperative cardiovascular events and increase the risk of patients with cancer undergoing major surgery. Our objective was to estimate the association between malignant disease and postoperative cardiovascular complications. Secondarily, we aimed to identify risk factors for postoperative cardiovascular complications.
METHODS: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of all patients ≥18 years undergoing emergency laparotomy between 2010 and 2016 at Department of Surgery, Zealand University Hospital, Denmark. Complications were graded according to Clavien-Dindo classification of surgical complications. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was performed to estimate association between malignant disease and cardiovascular complications within 30 days of emergency laparotomy and to identify other risk factors for postoperative cardiovascular complications after emergency laparotomy.
RESULTS: We identified 1188 patients ≥18 years undergoing emergency laparotomy between 2010 and 2016, in which 254 (21%) had malignant disease. Within 30 days of emergency laparotomy, 89 (9.5%) of patients without malignancy died, as compared with 45 (18%) of patients with malignancy (p < 0.001). Cardiovascular death occurred in 17 (1.8%) and 5 (2.0%) patients in the non-malignant and malignant group, respectively. Severe cardiovascular complication graded CD 3-5 occurred in 93 (8%) of all patients within 30 days of emergency laparotomy. We found no association between malignancy and postoperative cardiovascular complications in patients undergoing emergency surgery (OR 0.8, 95% CI; 0.4, 1.5). Increasing age and ASA physical status classification system (ASA) score ≥ III were the only independent risk factors of cardiovascular complications graded CD 3-5.
CONCLUSIONS: Malignancy was not associated with postoperative cardiovascular complications after emergency laparotomy. Risk factors for major cardiovascular complications after emergency abdominal surgery were age and ASA score ≥ III.