Minor effect of patient education for alcohol cessation intervention on outcomes after acute fracture surgery: a randomized trial of 70 patients
Keywords:alcohol intervention, ankle fracture, postoperative complications, surgery
Background and purpose: High alcohol intake is associated with increased risk of postoperative complications. Alcohol cessation intervention is recommended prior to elective surgery. We investigated short- and long-term effects of perioperative intensive alcohol intervention in relation to acute ankle fracture surgery.
Patients and methods: 70 patients requiring ankle fracture surgery and consuming ≥ 21 drinks weekly (1 drink = 12 g ethanol) were randomized to a manual-based 6-week intensive standardized alcohol cessation program, the Gold Standard Program (GSP-A), or treatment as usual (TAU), on the day of operation. GSP-A included 5 personal meetings, patient education, and motivational and pharmacological support (alcohol withdrawal prophylaxis, B vitamins, and low-dose disulfiram). Complications requiring treatment
were measured after 6 weeks and 1 year. Alcohol intake was validated by biomarkers. Quality of life (QoL) was measured by the SF-36. Hospital costs were obtained from the National Hospital Costs Register.
Results: Postoperatively, complete alcohol cessation was higher in the GSP-A than in the TAU group (18/35 vs. 5/35, number needed to treat = 3, p ≤ 0.001), but not lowrisk consumption in the long term (10/35 vs. 7/33, p = 0.5). Number of complications in the short and long term (12/35 vs. 14/33, 16/35 vs. 18/33), the SF-36 score, or hospital costs in the short and long term (€6,294 vs. €8,024, €10,662 vs.
€12,198), were similar between the groups.
Interpretation: Despite an effect on alcohol cessation and a positive tendency as regards the other outcomes, the postoperative complications, QoL, and costs were similar. Better perioperative strategies for acute surgical patients with high alcohol intake therefore need to be developed.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Julie Weber Melchior Egholm, Bolette Pedersen, Kristian Oppedal, Bjørn Lindegård Madsen, Jes Bruun Lauritzen, Mette Rasmussen, Anders Helander, Johanna Adami, Hanne Tønnesen
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/), allowing third parties to copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format and to remix, transform, and build upon the material for non-commercial purposes, provided proper attribution to the original work.