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Perioperative risk predictors for gender affirming surgery in the NSQIP database
Department of Urology, Sidney Kimmel Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Apr  2024 (Vol.  31, Issue  2, Pages( 11826 - 11833)
PMID: 38642460


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  • Introduction:

    Gender affirming surgeries (GAS), such as phalloplasty (PLPs) and vaginoplasty (VGPs), are important aspects of medical care for transgender patients. Here, we aim to better characterize patient demographics and surgical outcomes for PLPs and VGPs using the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP). We hypothesized that frailty indices would be predictive of perioperative PLP and VGP risk and outcomes for PLPs and VGPs.

    Materials and methods:

    Primary GAS, specifically PLPs and VGPs performed from 2006-2020 were identified in NSQIP. Baseline frailty was based on NSQIP’s modified frailty index (mFI) and preoperative morbidity probability (morbprob) variable.


    Fifty-eight PLPs and 468 VGPs were identified. The overall 30-day complication rate for PLP was 26%, with 17% of total patients experiencing minor complications and 16% experiencing major complications. The overall, minor, and major complication rates for VGP were 14%, 7%, and 9% respectively. Readmissions and reoperations occurred in 7% PLP and 5% VGP patients. No deaths occurred in either group within 30 days. The mFI scores were not predictive of 30-day complications or LOS. NSQIP morbprob was predictive of 30-day complications for both PLP (OR 4.0, 95% CI 1.08-19.59, p = 0.038) and VGP (OR 2.39, 95% CI 1.46-3.97, p = 0.0005). NSQIP’s morbprob was also predictive of extended LOS for PLP patients (6.3 ± 1.3 days, p = 0.03).


    This study describes patient characteristics and complication rates of PLPs and VGPs. The NSQIP preoperative morbprob is an effective predictor of surgical complications and is better than the mFI.