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Surgical Showdown: A Clear Winner Emerges in the Battle of the Sexes

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A groundbreaking University of Toronto study unveils an unexpected champion in the gender battle – the operating room! Patients under female surgeons’ care enjoy better post-surgery outcomes than their male counterparts. While earlier studies celebrated female surgeons’ 30-day successes, this research zooms in on a million patients, exploring outcomes at 90 days and one year.

The Study in Focus

This retrospective study scrutinized the frequency of adverse postoperative events, including complications, readmissions, and deaths, among patients undergoing 25 different elective or emergency surgeries between 2007 and 2019. Of the 1,165,711 patients studied, 151,054 were treated by female surgeons, while 1,014,657 were under male surgeons’ care.

Results Speak Volumes

Patients who undergo surgery with female surgeons experience better postoperative outcomes, according to a University of Toronto study. At 90 days, 12.5% of patients treated by female surgeons faced adverse postoperative events compared to 13.9% treated by males. At one year, this gap widened further, with 20.7% for female surgeons’ patients and 25% for males. Similar trends were seen in mortality rates, further emphasizing the benefits of female surgeons.

Breaking New Ground

In their report for the journal JAMA Surgery, the research team, led by Christopher J D Wallis, highlights the significance of these findings, noting that this study is the first to explore surgeon gender’s impact on outcomes beyond the 30-day postoperative period.
However, they also acknowledge disparities in the surgical workforce and the potential influence of differences in male and female surgeons’ practices on the results.

Supporting Women in Healthcare

Despite these findings, the study underscores ongoing challenges women face in the workplace. The researchers call for greater support and inclusion of women in healthcare to ensure the best patient care.

Final Note

In the ever-evolving world of medicine, female surgeons emerge as unsung heroes. Their impact extends beyond the operating room, reshaping the future of surgery, and ensuring better outcomes for patients. As we celebrate these pioneers, we recognize the transformative power they bring to healthcare.

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