Are You More Likely To Die Having Surgery On This Day Of The Week?

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You may have heard before that’s it’s best to not have surgery performed on a Friday, but a new large-scale Canadian study shows people having elective surgery on Friday are no more likely to die than people who undergo procedures any other weekday.

A prior British study found a 44% increase in death risk for patients who had surgery on a Friday compared to a Monday.

There’s the notion of the “weekday effect,” or the idea that surgeons who operate on Fridays may be less experienced, and the top doctors will handle procedures in the middle of the week. The Canadian study, led by researchers at Western University in London, Ontario, tried to debunk this theory.

Researchers examined close to 403,000 elective, commonly performed daytime procedures, ranging from hip replacements to work on internal organs from 2002 to 2012. They found the risk of death within 30 days was no greater for surgery on a Friday than any other weekday.

But researchers did find those who operate on Friday are less experienced.

Surgeon practice was lowest on both Fridays and Mondays, averaging 16 years. And it was highest on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, with most surgeons practicing for 19 years.

The study’s lead author says no matter the day, you should be in good hands.

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