Background: In a first step toward standardization, the Primary Aldosteronism Surgical Outcomes investigators introduced consensus criteria defining the clinical outcomes after adrenalectomy for primary aldosteronism. Within this retrospective cohort study, we evaluated the use of these consensus criteria in daily clinical practice in 16 centers in Europe, Canada, Australia, and the United States.
Methods: Patients who underwent unilateral adrenalectomy for primary aldosteronism between 2010 and 2016 were included. Patients with missing data regarding preoperative or postoperative blood pressure or their defined daily dose were excluded. According to the Primary Aldosteronism Surgical Outcomes criteria, patients were classified as complete, partial, or absent clinical success.
Results: A total of 380 patients were eligible for analysis. Complete, partial, and absent clinical success was achieved in 30%, 48%, and 22%, respectively. Evaluation of the Primary Aldosteronism Surgical Outcomes criteria showed that in 11% and 47% of patients with partial and absent clinical success, this classification was incorrect or debatable (16% of the total cohort). This concept of a "debatable classification of success" was due mainly to the cutoff of ≥20 mmHg used to indicate a clinically relevant change in systolic blood pressure and the use of percentages instead of absolute values to indicate a change in defined daily dose.
Conclusion: Although introduction of the Primary Aldosteronism Surgical Outcomes consensus criteria induced substantial advancement in the standardization of postoperative outcomes, our study suggests that there is room for improvement in the concept for success given the observed limitations when the criteria were tested within our international cohort. In line, determining clinical success remains challenging, especially in patients with opposing change in blood pressure and defined daily dose.
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