A Fuzzy FMEA Approach to Prioritizing Surgical Cancellation Factors

Document Type : Research Paper


Department of Industrial Engineering, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran


Background and Objectives: Surgical cancelation is a significant source of time and resource waste, patient safety risk, and stress for patients and their families. In this study, a risk management-based approach is developed to prioritize factors contributing to surgical cancellation.
Methods: Factors leading to surgical cancellation were comprehensively classified based on literature review. A Fuzzy Failure Mode and Effect Analysis were developed for identifying the relative importance of the potential surgical cancellation factors. Validity of the results was examined by obtaining experts’ opinions.
Findings: Our analysis identified inadequacy of recovery beds, inadequacy of ICU beds, high-risk surgery, and high blood pressure and diabetes as the most important factors contributing to surgical cancelation.
Conclusions: According to our results, the Fuzzy Failure Mode and Effect Analysis can successfully rank the factors contributing to surgical cancellation. Our results encourage further use of the risk management theory and tools combined with fuzzy set theory to support and facilitate the clinical decision-making process.