Gender and frailty predict poor outcomes in infrainguinal vascular surgery

Reshma Brahmbhatt, Luke P. Brewster, Susan Shafii, Ravi R. Rajani, Ravi Veeraswamy, Atef Salam, Thomas F. Dodson, Shipra Arya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


Background Women have poorer outcomes after vascular surgery as compared to men as shown by studies recently. Frailty is also an independent risk factor for postoperative morbidity and mortality. This study examines the interplay of gender and frailty on outcomes after infrainguinal vascular procedures. Materials and methods The American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database was used to identify all patients who underwent infrainguinal vascular procedures from 2005-2012. Frailty was measured using a modified frailty index (mFI; derived from the Canadian Study of Health and Aging). Univariate and multivariate analysis were performed to investigate the association of preoperative frailty and gender, on postoperative outcomes. Results Of 24,645 patients (92% open, 8% endovascular), there were 533 deaths (2.2%) and 6198 (25.1%) major complications within 30 d postoperatively. Women were more frail (mean mFI = 0.269) than men (mean mFI = 0.259; P < 0.001). Women and frail patients (mFI>0.25) were more likely to have a major morbidity (P < 0.001) or mortality (P < 0.001) with the highest risk in frail women. On multivariate logistic regression analysis, female gender and increasing mFI were independently significantly associated with mortality (P < 0.05) as well as major complications. The interaction of gender and frailty in multivariate analysis showed the highest adjusted 30-d mortality and morbidity in frail females at 2.8% and 30.1%, respectively and that was significantly higher (P < 0.001) than nonfrail males, nonfrail females and frail males. Conclusions Female gender and frailty are both associated with increased risk of complications and death following infrainguinal vascular procedures with the highest risk in frail females. Further studies are needed to explore the mechanisms of interaction of gender and frailty and its effect on long-term outcomes for peripheral vascular disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)156-165
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Surgical Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Elsevier Inc.


  • Complications
  • Frailty
  • Gender
  • Infrainguinal bypass
  • Outcomes
  • Revascularization


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