November 16, 2018 – In the weekly blog post, Forward, blogger Peggy Sarlin interviews neurosurgeon Dr Joseph Maroon on the stress and anxiety associated with patients undergoing surgery. Dr Maroon discusses his faith and the benefits he has found for the patient, their family and himself when prayer is offered prior to surgery.
If a patient is willing, Dr. Maroon will take his or her hand and quietly says, “Today is the day the Lord hath made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it. And with the Lord’s help, let’s get you back to your health, your family, and your life.”
The prayer only takes thirty seconds, but its results are profound. Dr. Maroon can see the stress melting away in the patient. And after surgery, the most common comment that he gets is, “You know, Doctor, I just want to thank you for saying that prayer.”
As discussed in the article, stress can not only cause emotional discomfort, there are numerous other adverse physical consequences to stress. From a medical publication from 2011, by Jean-Philippe Gouina, et al.*, from Ohio State University College of Medicine, found greater fear or distress prior to surgery has been associated with poorer outcomes including longer hospital stays, more postoperative complications, and higher rates of rehospitalization.
They also reported patients who had more stress prior to surgery had poorer wound healing in the following 6 weeks after surgery, and this was previously demonstrated in patients who were depressed.
Prayer has helps me with stress, notes Dr Maroon, and just those few minutes of thinking about anything else beside your surgery the patients experience some much needed relief.
See entire article on stress and surgery – HERE
Note- The patient in the photo has signed a release for Dr Maroon to use this photo.