BACKGROUND: Patient-reported experience is often used as a measure for quality of care, but no reports on patient satisfaction after cranial neurosurgery exist.
OBJECTIVE: To study the association of overall patient satisfaction and surgical outcome and to evaluate the applicability of overall patient satisfaction as a proxy for quality of care in elective cranial neurosurgery.
METHODS: We conducted an observational study on the relationship of overall patient satisfaction at 30 postoperative days with surgical and functional outcome (modified Rankin Scale [mRS] score) in a prospective, consecutive, and unselected cohort of 418 adult elective craniotomy patients enrolled between December 2011 and December 2012 at Helsinki University Hospital, Helsinki, Finland.
RESULTS: Postoperative overall (subjective and objective) morbidity was present in 194 (46.4%) patients; yet almost 94% of all study patients reported high overall satisfaction. Low overall patient satisfaction at 30 days was not associated with postoperative major morbidity in elective cranial neurosurgery. Dependent functional status (mRS score >=3) at 30 days, minor infections, poor postoperative subjective overall health status, and patient-reported severe symptoms (double vision, poor balance) may contribute to a unsatisfactory patient experience.
CONCLUSION: Overall patient satisfaction with elective cranial neurosurgery is high. Even 9 of 10 patients with postoperative major morbidity rated high overall patient satisfaction at 30 days. Overall patient satisfaction may merely reflect patient experience and subjective postoperative health status, and therefore it is a poor proxy for quality of care in elective cranial neurosurgery.
From: Patient Satisfaction and Short-Term Outcome in Elective Cranial Neurosurgery by Reponen et al.
Full text access for Neurosurgery subscribers.