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Development and validation of a deep neural network model to predict postoperative mortality, acute kidney injury, and reintubation using a single feature set

Apr 1, 2020


During the perioperative period patients often suffer complications, including acute kidney injury (AKI), reintubation, and mortality. In order to effectively prevent these complications, high-risk patients must be readily identified. However, most current risk scores are designed to predict a single postoperative complication and often lack specificity on the patient level. In other fields, machine learning (ML) has been shown to successfully create models to predict multiple end points using a single input feature set. We hypothesized that ML can be used to create models to predict postoperative mortality, AKI, reintubation, and a combined outcome using a single set of features available at the end of surgery. A set of 46 features available at the end of surgery, including drug dosing, blood loss, vital signs, and others were extracted. Additionally, six additional features accounting for total intraoperative hypotension were extracted and trialed for different models. A total of 59,981 surgical procedures met inclusion criteria and the deep neural networks (DNN) were trained on 80% of the data, with 20% reserved for testing. The network performances were then compared to ASA Physical Status. In addition to creating separate models for each outcome, a multitask learning model was trialed that used information on all outcomes to predict the likelihood of each outcome individually. The overall rate of the examined complications in this data set was 0.79% for mortality, 22.3% (of 21,676 patients with creatinine values) for AKI, and 1.1% for reintubation. Overall, there was significant overlap between the various model types for each outcome, with no one modeling technique consistently performing the best. However, the best DNN models did beat the ASA score for all outcomes other than mortality. The highest area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) models were 0.792 (0.775–0.808) for AKI, 0.879 (0.851–0.905) for reintubation, 0.907 (0.872–0.938) for mortality, and 0.874 (0.864–0.866) for any outcome. The ASA score alone achieved AUCs of 0.652 (0.636–0.669) for AKI, 0.787 (0.757–0.818) for reintubation, 0.839 (0.804–0.875) for mortality, and 0.76 (0.748–0.773) for any outcome. Overall, the DNN architecture was able to create models that outperformed the ASA physical status to predict all outcomes based on a single feature set, consisting of objective data available at the end of surgery. No one model architecture consistently performed the best.

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