Why are doctors looking at refusing to operate on smokers?

It is happening in America already, how long before it happens here in the UK? Not long would be the answer as it is not only medical reasons that will be a influence in the UK.

In the USA, the medical reasoning is the main reason, as the insurance market results in Doctors being paid for the procedures, so they have no financial incentive not to undertake the operations. However in the UK the financial pressures that face the NHS, is starting to ration the services and operations available. By limiting the services and operations by refusing to operate on smokers or obese patients does offer the ability to ration services under the cloak of clinical requirement.

By now it is common knowledge that smoking is bad for the human body, you don’t need anymore science to prove this, but it seems that smoking may now keep you from being operated on. It looks as if doctors are becoming hesitant to do surgeries on people who smoke due to the success of the surgeries being higher in those who don’t smoke versus those who do.

A recent case comes out of The Charlotte Observer that published an article about a doctor turning down a patient for a back surgery due to the fact that he was a smoker. Some may see this as odd, and basically illegal in some ways. However, the article went on to explain why the doctor did so. The doctor did not want to proceed with it because the recovery and success of the surgery was going to be lower for this particular spinal fusion surgery.

This is not an isolated event by any means. An orthopedic surgeon explained that the results of surgeries aren’t as good for people who smoke, because smoking affects your blood flow. This makes sense to many, as blood being messed with will affect the body and its ability to heal. For example, imagine having a hose at home with little kinks in it throughout, the water getting through would be odd and it may get through…but it would take longer. From there, you see that the kinks affected the entire system of water going through when, if those were gone, water would flow just fine.

Doctors simply want to avoid complications that smokers clearly provide. It costs the patients more money long-term, and they do not get a good recovery. This also makes the surgeons performing the surgery look bad, as they have to do numerous surgeries on people and they may be blamed for the complication when the smoker themselves were the ones who caused it themselves. Via inquisitr.com