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Sickness absence after inguinal herniorrhaphy.
  1. M Griffiths,
  2. M E Oblin,
  3. E D Acheson


    Eight hundred and ninety-nine men were studied, aged 16-65 inclusive, who underwent an elective inguinal herniorrhaphy during 1970 and 1971 in eight hospitals in Wessex, and under nine consultant surgeons. There was a significant variation in postoperative inpatient stay and total sickness absence between hospitals and between consultants. The physical activity involved in the patient's occupation, his age at operation, previous sickness absence, bilateral herniorrhaphy, attendance at follow-up outpatients' clinic, type of repair, and the influence exerted by three hospitals and two consultants accounted for only 21% of the variation in total sickness absence. The general practitioners who had referred patients to the hospitals for herniorrhaphy, and the consultant surgeons who carried out the operations, were sent a questionnaire to ascertain their attitudes towards follow-up outpatient appointments and the various factors identified in the first part of the study as significantly influencing total sickness absence. A higher proportion of GPs who felt that an outpatient appointment was necessary before return to work was found in relation to the patients who had the longest mean total sickness absences than among the GPs who looked after the patients with shorter total sickness absences.

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