The Effect of Discharging Patients with Low Hemoglobin Levels on Hospital Readmission and Quality of Life after Adult Spinal Deformity Surgery

Creative Commons License

Nabi V., Ayhan S., YÜKSEL S., Adhikari P., Vila-Casademunt A., Pellise F., ...More

Asian Spine Journal, vol.16, no.2, pp.261-269, 2022 (ESCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 16 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.31616/asj.2020.0629
  • Journal Name: Asian Spine Journal
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Page Numbers: pp.261-269
  • Keywords: Adult spine deformity, Anemia, Health-related quality of life, Hospital readmission, Patient outcome assessment
  • Ankara Yıldırım Beyazıt University Affiliated: Yes


© 2022 by Korean Society of Spine Surgery This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.Study Design: Retrospective cohort. Purpose: This study aims to evaluate the impact of anemia on functional outcomes, health-related quality of life (HRQoL), and early hospital readmission (EHR) rates after adult spinal deformity (ASD) surgery at the time of discharge from the hospital. Overview of Literature: Concerns with risks of transfusion, insufficient evidence for its benefits, and the possibility of associated adverse outcomes have led to restrictive transfusion practices. Therefore, patients are discharged according to patient blood management programs that are implemented in hospitals nationwide to reduce unnecessary blood transfusions. However, not many comprehensive kinds of studies exist on the effect of postoperative anemia on functional life and complications. Methods: Anemia severity was defined following the 2011 World Health Organization guidelines. All patients had HRQoL tests as well as complete blood counts pre and postoperatively. EHR is the admission within 30 days of discharge and was used as the dependent parameter. Results: This study comprised 225 surgically treated ASD patients with a median age of 62.0 years, predominantly women (80%). Of the 225 patients, 82, 137, and six had mild, moderate, and severe anemia at the time of discharge, respectively. Seventeen of the patients (mild [11, 64.7%]; moderate [5, 29.4%]; severe [1, 5.9%]) were readmitted within 30 days. The mean hemoglobin values were higher in readmitted patients (p =0.071). Infection was the leading cause of readmission (n=12), but a low hemoglobin level was not observed in any of these patients at the time of discharge. Except for Scoliosis Research Society-22 questionnaire, HRQoL improvements did not reach statistical significance in early readmitted patients in the first year after surgery. Conclusions: The results of this study demonstrated that the occurrence and the severity of postoperative anemia are not associated with EHR in surgically treated patients with ASD. The findings of the current research suggested that clinical awareness of the parameters other than postoperative anemia may be crucial. Thus, improvements in HRQoL scores were poor in early readmitted patients 1 year after surgery.