Timing is everything - Colectomy performed on Monday decreases length of stay

Denis M. Gilmore, Thomas Curran, Shiva Gautam, Deborah Nagle, Vitaliy Poylin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Background: Perioperative care of patients undergoing colon resection requires a multidisciplinary approach by the operating surgeon, residents, and nurses. Operations performed on Monday take full advantage of hospital resources throughout the week to meet expected discharge by Friday. In a current health care environment of diminishing means, improving the timing of surgery in relation to expected length of stay may play an important role in preserving health care resources. Methods: A retrospective review of a prospectively collected colorectal surgical database identified all patients who underwent segmental colon resection at a single tertiary care referral center from 2004 to 2010. Length of stay for patients undergoing elective open and minimally invasive segmental colectomy was compared for MondTiming is everythingay versus Tuesday through the weekend. Patient and surgeon demographics were recorded as well as postoperative outcomes and complications. Results: A total of 868 segmental colectomies were performed during the study period. Length of stay was significantly decreased by.73 days (P <.01) for all segmental colectomies performed on Monday compared with those performed Tuesday through Sunday. There was also a significant decrease in length of stay looking independently at right (.96 days, P <.01) and left or sigmoid colectomies (.56 days, P <.01). There was no significant difference in patient or surgeon demographics to account for this difference. Conclusions: Segmental colectomies have a significantly decreased length in stay when performed on Monday compared with the rest of the week. The decrease is independent of surgeon, comorbidities, and complications. This difference may be the result of patients' taking full advantage of hospital resources and ancillary support. Cost-effective measures may be evaluated and directed at adjustment of resources available throughout the week to reduce length of stay.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)340-345
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican journal of surgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2013


  • Colectomy
  • Day of week
  • Length of stay

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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