Frailty Assessment in the Emergency Department for Patients ≥80 Years Undergoing Urgent Major Surgical Procedures

Marcello Covino*, Sara Salini, Andrea Russo, Giuseppe De Matteis, Benedetta Simeoni, Giulio Maccauro, Gabriele Sganga, Francesco Landi, Antonio Gasbarrini, Francesco Franceschi

*Autore corrispondente per questo lavoro

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivistapeer review


Objectives: To evaluate, in a cohort of adults ≥80 years old, the frailty status at the emergency department (ED) admission, for the in-hospital death risk stratification of patients needing major surgical procedures. Design: Single-center prospective observational cohort study. Setting and Participants: The study was conducted in the ED of a teaching hospital. We enrolled all patients ≥80 years old consecutively admitted to the ED for conditions requiring urgent surgical procedures, between 2018 and 2021. Methods: Clinical variables and frailty status assessed in the ED were evaluated for the association with all-cause in-hospital death. The parameters evaluated were frailty [assessed by the Clinical Frailty Scale (CFS)], comorbidities, physiological parameters, type of surgery needed, laboratory values at admission. Cox regression analysis was used to identify independent risk factors for poor outcomes. Results: The study enrolled 1039 patients aged ≥80 years [median age 85 years (interquartile range 82-89); 445 males (42.8%)]. Overall, 127 patients (12.2%) were classified as nonfrail (CFS score 1-3), 722 (69.5%) as mild frail (CFS score 4-6), and 190 (18.3%) as frail (CFS score 7-9). The covariate-adjusted analysis revealed that severe frailty [hazard ratio (HR) 12.55, 95% CI 2.96-53.21, P = .016], ≥3 comorbidities (HR 2.08, 95% CI 1.31-3.31, P = .002), shock at ED presentation (HR 3.58, 95% CI 2.16-5.92, P < .001), anemia (HR 1.88, 95% CI 1.17-3.04, P = .009), and neurosurgery procedures (HR 3.97, 95% CI 1.98-7.96, P < .001) were independent risk factors for in-hospital death. Conclusions and Implications: In patients aged ≥80 years undergoing urgent surgical procedures, the evaluation of functional status in the ED could predict the risk of in-hospital death. Frail patients have an increased risk of death and major complications, whereas those with mild frailty have a similar prognosis compared with the more fit ones. Nonsurgical management should be considered in the case of severely frail and comorbid patients aged ≥80 years needing neurosurgery or abdominal surgery.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)581-588
Numero di pagine8
RivistaJournal of the American Medical Directors Association
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2022


  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Clinical Frailty Scale
  • Emergency Service, Hospital
  • Frail Elderly
  • Frailty
  • Geriatric Assessment
  • Hospital Mortality
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies
  • Urgent surgical procedures
  • multimorbidity
  • older adults


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