Magnitude and reasons of surgery cancellation among elective surgical cases in Wolaita Sodo University Comprehensive Specialized Hospital, Southern Ethiopia, 2021

BMC Surg. 2022 Aug 4;22(1):300. doi: 10.1186/s12893-022-01749-y.


Background: Cancellations of cases are common; most of those cancellations are due to avoidable causes. It is a major cause of psychological trauma for patients and their families. Although little is known in Ethiopia, the aim of this study is aimed to assess the prevalence and the cause of elective surgery cancellation.

Methods: A cross-sectional prospective study design was conducted on 326 patients scheduled for elective surgery from October 1 to December 1st. All consecutive elective surgical cases scheduled during the study period were included in the study. Data were collected using a prepared and pretested questionnaire and entered into SPSS version 23 for analysis. The result of the study was reported in the form of text, tables, and graphs.

Result: During the study, 326 patients were scheduled for elective surgery, among those, 83(25.6%) of surgery was canceled. Patient-related (31.32%) and administrative-related (26.5%) factors were the two most causes of cancellation.

Conclusion: Patient-related and administrative-related factors were the leading causes of cancellation of elective surgical operations in our hospital. Concerned bodies should bring a sustainable change and improvement to prevent unnecessary cancellations and enhance cost-effectiveness through communications, careful planning and efficient utilization of the available hospital resources.

Keywords: Cancellation; Cases; Elective surgery; Ethiopia; Prevalence.

MeSH terms

  • Appointments and Schedules*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Elective Surgical Procedures
  • Ethiopia
  • Hospitals, University
  • Humans
  • Operating Rooms*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Universities