Series of ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysms from a municipal teaching hospital and from a group of private surgeons practicing at four community hospitals were compared for hemodynamic status and time to operation, as well as mortality. The overall mortality rate was 61 percent for the municipal hospital series and 32 percent for the community hospital series, which was significantly different (p = 0.003). The municipal hospital series had a significantly greater number of patients in shock before operation, as well as a greater number of patients transported directly to the operating room. The community hospital series had a significantly greater number of patients with a more than 6 hour delay in diagnosis and delays in surgical exploration. When those patients in shock who were brought directly to the operating room were compared, there was no statistical difference between the two series. Further reviews of ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysms should attempt to identify groups of patients by their hemodynamic status when evaluating treatment.
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