About Complications

Dr. Pezim was the Chairman of the General Surgery Mortality and Morbidity (complications) Rounds at the Vancouver General Hospital for several years and has an interest in the prevention and management of surgical complications.

Approximately 1,000 procedures are performed at the Pezim Clinic every year, including colonoscopies, flexible sigmoidoscopies and anorectal surgical procedures. Although it is true that complications are part of any surgical practice, there are definitely ways to minimize them, and so Clinic staff spend a great deal of effort ensuring that systems are in place to prevent complications before they happen.  These systems include: the highest level of training, rigorous patient selection by the Medical Director who is responsible to the College of Physicians & Surgeons of BC, patient education and preparation, continuous maintenance of and thorough familiarity with all equipment, limiting the types of procedures to those that can be safely performed in a clinic setting, meticulous performance of all procedures by an experienced surgeon, appropriate post-procedure patient information, and conscientious follow-up by the physician undertaking the procedure.

As an additional means of preventing complications and to recognize them as soon as possible so that they can be dealt with effectively, the patient’s care will not be turned back over the Family Physician until the results of the procedure are known and thoroughly discussed with the patient, including all follow-up appointments required to discuss results of biopsies, polypectomies, etc.  The Clinic Medical Director does not expect referring Family Physicians to be required to do initial follow-up following a Pezim Clinic procedure, nor is such a situation ideal.  Initial follow-up should be the role of the surgeon who has done the procedure.  By agreeing to undertake a procedure on you, we are committing ourselves to follow-up care, and in some cases we have seen patients as required for years to deal with those aspects of their health that relate to our area of expertise, in association with their family physicians.  We are proud of this commitment to ongoing care.

As part of our accreditation requirements, any post-procedure complication that involves hospitalization must be reported to the College of Physicians & Surgeons of BC.  These complications are discussed by the Non-Hospital Medical/Surgical Facility Committee of the College and an assessment (including all charts and records) of the procedure and follow-up is made and a report issued by the Committee to the Pezim Clinic.

© Pezim Clinic, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada