Design of a Consensus-Derived Synoptic Operative Report for Lung Cancer Surgery Journal Articles uri icon

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  • BACKGROUND: For lung cancer surgery, a narrative operative report is the standard reporting procedure, whereas a synoptic-style report is increasingly utilized by healthcare professionals in various specialties with great success. A synoptic operative report more succinctly and accurately captures vital information and is rapidly generated with good intraobserver reliability. The objective of this study was to systematically develop a synoptic operative report for lung cancer surgery following a modified Delphi consensus model with the support of the Canadian thoracic surgery community. METHODS: Using online survey software, thoracic surgeons and related physicians were asked to suggest and rate data elements for a synoptic report following the modified Delphi consensus model. The consensus exercise-derived template was forwarded to a small working group, who further refined the definition and priority designation of elements until the working group had reached a satisfactory consensus. RESULTS: In all, 139 physicians were invited to participate in the consensus exercise, with 36.7%, 44.6%, and 19.5% response rates, respectively, in the three rounds. Eighty-nine elements were agreed upon at the conclusion of the exercise, but 141 elements were forwarded to the working group. The working group agreed upon a final data set of 180 independently defined data elements, with 72 mandatory and 108 optional elements for implementation in the final report. CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrates the process involved in developing a multidisciplinary, consensus-based synoptic lung cancer operative report. This novel report style is a quality improvement initiative to improve the capture, dissemination, readability, and potential utility of critical surgical information.


  • Schneider, Laura
  • Shargall, Yaron
  • Schieman, Colin
  • Seely, Andrew J
  • Srinathan, Sadeesh
  • Malthaner, Richard A
  • Pierre, Andrew F
  • Safieddine, Najib
  • Vaillancourt, Rosaire
  • Plourde, Madelaine
  • Bond, James
  • Johnson, Scott
  • Smith, Shona E
  • Finley, Christian John

publication date

  • April 2014