Recent Preoperative Concussion and Postoperative Complications: A Retrospective Matched-cohort Study

Ryan S. D'Souza, Matthew A. Sexton, Phillip J. Schulte, Jeffrey J. Pasternak, Arnoley S. Abcejo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Physiological alterations during the perianesthetic period may contribute to secondary neurocognitive injury after a concussion. Methods: Patients exposed to concussion and who received an anesthetic within 90 days were matched to unexposed patients without concussion. Intraoperative and postoperative events were compared. Subgroup analyses assessed relationships among patients with a concussion in the prior 30, 31 to 60, and 61 to 90 days and their respective unexposed matches. To facilitate identification of potential targets for further investigation, statistical comparisons are reported before, as well as after, correction for multiple comparisons. Results: Sixty concussion patients were matched to 176 unexposed patients. Before correction, 28.3% postconcussion versus 14.8% unexposed patients reported postanesthesia care unit pain score≥7 (P=0.02); 16.7% concussion versus 6.5% unexposed patients reported headache within 90 days of anesthesia (P=0.02) and 23.5% of patients who received surgery and anesthesia within 30 days of concussion experienced headache within 90 days of anesthesia compared with 7.1% in the unexposed group (P=0.01). Patients who experienced concussion and had anesthesia between 31 and 60 days after injury had a postanesthesia care unit Richmond Agitation and Sedation Scale score of -1.61±1.29 versus a score of -0.2±0.45 in unexposed patients (P=0.002). After adjusting the P-value threshold for multiple comparisons, the P-value for significance was instead 0.0016 for the overall cohort. Our study revealed no significant associations with application of adjusted significance thresholds. Conclusions: There were no differences in intraoperative and postoperative outcomes in patients with recent concussion compared with unexposed patients. Before correction for multiple comparisons, several potential targets for further investigation are identified. Well-powered studies are warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)221-229
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neurosurgical Anesthesiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2021


  • anesthesia
  • anesthesia recovery period
  • concussion
  • falls
  • headache
  • postconcussion syndrome
  • sports
  • traumatic brain injury
  • treatment outcome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Recent Preoperative Concussion and Postoperative Complications: A Retrospective Matched-cohort Study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this