This study seeks to systematically review the current literature on how surgical team familiarity relates to metrics of operative efficiency.
The operating room (OR) is a complex environment involving numerous multidisciplinary interactions that must interface precisely to achieve a successful outcome.
A systematic search of the PubMed database was prospectively registered in the National Institute for Health Research PROSPERO database (CRD 42020181046) and performed according to Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. Exposure variable was team familiarity and outcome measures included operative efficiency, patient outcomes, costs, and/or team satisfaction.
Of 1123 articles screened, 15 studies involving 24,340 operations met inclusion criteria. All studies were limited to an individual specialty, procedure, or both. The effects of more familiar teams were most pronounced in decreasing operative times [standardized mean difference of −0.51 (95% confidence interval: −1.00, −0.02), P=0.04], whereas the reported impacts on patient clinical outcomes, material waste, and team satisfaction were much more heterogenous.
Improving OR team familiarity is associated with superior operative efficiency and may be associated with other favorable measures. Further inferences are limited by literature heterogeneity, yet could be a novel focus for improving OR performance.