Physicians at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, Philadelphia, have developed an analytical tool to identify surgical patients at risk for costly respiratory complications. This tool may help hospitals avoid those complications and their related costs.

The investigators developed a scoring system to identify risk factors for ventilator dependence after major operations by using data from the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS NSQIP).

According to the study authors, the need for ventilation is not widespread. Previous reports have estimated approximately one to three percent of patients who have non-emergency surgical procedures require ventilation afterward.