To the Editor: I read with great interest your 1-Minute Consult and the accompanying editorial on preoperative testing. I have long requested from my local hospitals the rationale for the long list of tests that used to be mandated for any surgery. I could not even get the courtesy of a reply from the department of anesthesia. For a while, in addition to the complete blood cell count and chemistry panel, one hospital demanded a urinalysis for cataract surgery.
Finally, without any explanation, the testing is now no longer mandated for cataract surgery but is still required for surgery such as the meniscus repair that was referenced.
These are not tests I want to order, but I am forced to order them or the surgery won’t be done. Certainly, in a diabetic patient or a patient treated with a complex regimen for hypertension, tests may be needed.