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ASA classification, Breast Cancer, Risk Assessment
Background: There are various factors affecting the effectiveness of the treatment of breast cancer patients. Although the disease pathology, along with surgery and other therapeutic modalities, plays the principal role in patient outcomes, anesthesia still plays an important role in the success of treatment. This study was designed to show the effects of anesthetic plans on risk classification and assessment in breast cancer surgeries.
Methods: Two hundred sixty patients receiving different types of breast cancer surgery for therapeutic and reconstructive purposes were enrolled in this study. They were divided into three groups according to the anesthesia risk assessment. Group 1 consisted of low-risk patients (ASA I) who received small surgeries such as lumpectomy. Patients with intermediate risk of anesthesia (ASA II) or those who underwent breast cancer and axillary surgery with overnight admission (ASA I or II) were considered as group 2. Group 3 comprised the patients with higher risk for anesthesia (ASA class III) regardless of the surgery type or those in any ASA class who were about to undergo advanced and prolonged surgeries such as breast reconstruction with free or pedicle flaps.
Results: Two hundred sixty-eight surgical interventions were done in 260 patients. There were 106, 107, and 47 patients in groups 1, 2, and 3, respectively. In group 1, five patients out of 106 were admitted in the hospital for 24 hours after surgery and the remaining 101 patients were discharged from the hospital in a few hours after the operation when they were fully conscious and could tolerate the diet completely. All 107 patients in group 2 were admitted in the hospital for a few days after the operation, though the vast majority of them (98 patients) discharged from the hospital the day after surgery. In the last group, 6 out of 47 patients showed the signs of surgical complications such as partial flap ischemia in the postoperative period, mostly after TRAM or DIEP flap breast reconstruction surgery.
Conclusion: The findings of this study support the idea that breast surgeries can be done in an ambulatory situation with no considerable risk. In contrast, all medical and anesthetic considerations should be taken into account in more complex surgeries, especially when they are applied in high-risk patients.
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