Publications by authors named "Cheryl K Zogg"

114 Publications

Reassessing the July Effect: 30 Years of Evidence Show No Difference in Outcomes.

Ann Surg 2021 Feb 25. Epub 2021 Feb 25.

*Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT †Center for Surgery and Public Health: Department of Surgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA ‡Yale School of Public Health, New Haven, CT §Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology, and Musculoskeletal Sciences, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom ¶The Aga Khan University Medical College, Karachi, Pakistan.

Objective: To critically evaluate whether admission at the beginning-versus-end of the academic year is associated with increased risk of major adverse outcomes.

Summary Background Data: The hypothesis that the arrival of new residents and fellows is associated with increases in adverse patient outcomes has been the subject of numerous research studies since 1989.

Methods: We conducted a systematic review and random-effects meta-analysis of July Effect studies published prior to December 20, 2019, for differences in mortality, major morbidity, and readmission. Given a paucity of studies reporting readmission, we further analyzed 7 years of data from the Nationwide Readmissions Database to assess for differences in 30-day readmission for US patients admitted to urban teaching-versus-non-teaching hospitals with 3 common medical (acute myocardial infarction, acute ischemic stroke, and pneumonia) and 4 surgical (elective coronary artery bypass graft surgery, elective colectomy, craniotomy, and hip fracture) conditions using risk-adjusted logistic difference-in-difference regression.

Results: A total of 113 studies met inclusion criteria; 92 (81.4%) reported no evidence of a July Effect. Among the remaining studies, results were mixed and commonly pointed toward system-level discrepancies in efficiency. Meta-analyses of mortality (OR[95%CI]: 1.01[0.98-1.05]) and major morbidity (1.01[0.99-1.04]) demonstrated no evidence of a July Effect, no differences between specialties or countries, and no change in the effect over time. A total of 5.98 million patient encounters were assessed for readmission. No evidence of a July Effect on readmission was found for any of the 7 conditions.

Conclusions: The preponderance of negative results over the past 30 years suggests that it may be time to reconsider the need for similarly-themed studies and instead focus on system-level factors to improve hospital efficiency and optimize patient outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/SLA.0000000000004805DOI Listing
February 2021

Post-traumatic seizures following pediatric traumatic brain injury.

Clin Neurol Neurosurg 2021 Apr 10;203:106556. Epub 2021 Feb 10.

Department of Neurosurgery, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, 06520, CT, United States. Electronic address:

Objectives: The aim of this study was to investigate the national impact of demographic, hospital, and inpatient risk factors on post-traumatic seizure (PTS) development in pediatric patients who presented to the ED following a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Patients And Methods: The Nationwide Emergency Department Sample database years 2010-2014 was queried. Patients (<21 years old) with a primary diagnosis of TBI and subsequent secondary diagnosis of PTS were identified using the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification coding system. We identified demographic variables, hospital characteristics, pre-existing medical comorbidities, etiology of injuries, and type of injury. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to identify the factors associated with post-traumatic seizures.

Results: We identified 1,244,087 patients who sustained TBI, of which 10,340 (0.83%) developed PTS. Of the patients who had seizures, the youngest cohort aged 0-5 years had the greatest proportion of seizure development (p < 0.001). Compared to those TBI patients with loss of consciousness (LOC), patients encountering no LOC after TBI had the smallest proportion of seizures while Prolonged LOC with baseline return had the greatest proportion. On univariate analysis of the effect of in-hospital complication on rate of seizures, respiratory, renal and urinary, hematoma, septicemia, and other neurological complications were all significantly associated with seizure development. On multivariate regression, age 6-10 years (OR: 0.48, p < 0.001) 11-15 years (OR: 0.41, p < 0.001), and 16-20 years (OR: 0.51, p < 0.001) were independently associated with decreased risk of developing seizures. Extended LOC with baseline return (OR: 6.33, p < 0.001), extended LOC without baseline return (OR: 1.95, p = 0.009), and Other LOC (OR: 3.02, p < 0.001) were independently associated with increased risk of developing seizures. Subarachnoid hemorrhage (OR: 4.14, p < 0.001), subdural hemorrhage [OR: 7.72, p < 0.001), and extradural hemorrhage (OR: 3.13, p < 0.001) were all independently associated with increased risk of developing seizures.

Conclusion: Out study demonstrates that various demographic, hospital, and clinical risk factors are associated with the development of seizures following traumatic brain injury. Enhancing awareness of these drivers may help provide greater awareness of patients likely to develop post-traumatic seizures such that this complication can be decreased in incidence so as to improve quality of care and decrease healthcare costs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.clineuro.2021.106556DOI Listing
April 2021

Learning from England's Best Practice Tariff: Process Measure Pay-for-Performance Can Improve Hip Fracture Outcomes.

Ann Surg 2021 Jan 22. Epub 2021 Jan 22.

Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology, and Musculoskeletal Sciences, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom Center for Surgery and Public Health: Department of Surgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA Yale School of Public Health, New Haven, CT Musculoskeletal Research Unit, Translational Health Sciences, Bristol Medical School, University of Bristol, Southmead Hospital, Bristol, United Kingdom School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Brigham & Women's Hospital, Boston, MA.

Objective: The objective of this study was to evaluate England's Best Practice Tariff (BPT) and consider potential implications for Medicare patients should the US adopt a similar plan.

Summary Background Data: Since the beginning of the Affordable Care Act, Medicare has renewed efforts to improve the outcomes of older adults through introduction of an expanding set of alternative-payment models. Among trauma patients, recommended arrangements met with mixed success given concerns about the heterogeneous nature of trauma patients and resulting outcome variation. A novel approach taken for hip fractures in England could offer a viable alternative.

Methods: Linear regression, interrupted time-series, difference-in-difference, and counterfactual models of 2000-2016 Medicare (US), HES-APC (England) death certificate-linked claims (≥65y) were used to: track US hip fracture trends, look at changes in English hip fracture trends before-and-after BPT implementation, compare changes in US-versus-English mortality, and estimate total/theoretical lives saved.

Results: 806,036 English and 3,221,109 US hospitalizations were included. Following BPT implementation, England's 30-day mortality decreased by 2.6 percentage-points (95%CI: 1.7-3.5) from a baseline of 9.9% (relative reduction 26.3%). 90- and 365-day mortality decreased by 5.6 and 5.4 percentage-points. 30/90/365-day readmissions also declined with a concurrent shortening of hospital length-of-stay. From 2000-2016, US outcomes were stagnant (p > 0.05), resulting in an inversion of the countries' mortality and > 38,000 potential annual US lives saved.

Conclusions: Process measure pay-for-performance led to significant improvements in English hip fracture outcomes. As efforts to improve US older adult health continue to increase, there are important lessons to be learned from a successful initiative like the BPT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/SLA.0000000000004305DOI Listing
January 2021

Thirty- and 90-day Readmissions After Spinal Surgery for Spine Metastases: A National Trend Analysis of 4423 Patients.

Spine (Phila Pa 1976) 2020 Dec 28;Publish Ahead of Print. Epub 2020 Dec 28.

Department of Neurosurgery, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT.

Study Design: Retrospective cohort study.

Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate differences in 30- and 90-day readmissions for spine metastases treated with decompression and/or fusion spine surgery in a nationwide readmission database.

Summary Of Background Data: Patients with metastases to the spine represent a particularly vulnerable patient group that may encounter frequent readmissions. However, the 30- and 90-day rates for readmission following surgery for spine metastases have not been well described.

Methods: The Nationwide Readmission Database years 2013 to 2015 was queried. Patients were grouped by no readmission (non-R), readmission within 30 days (30-R), and readmission within 31 to 90 days (90-R). Weighted multivariate analysis assessed impact of treatment approach and clinical factors associated with 30- and 90-day readmissions.

Results: There were a total of 4423 patients with a diagnosis of spine metastases identified who underwent spine surgery, of which 1657 (37.5%) encountered either a 30-or 90-day unplanned readmission (30-R: n = 1068 [24-.1%]; 90-R: n = 589 [13.3%]; non-R: n = 2766). The most prevalent inpatient complications observed were postoperative infection (30-R: 16.3%, 90-R: 14.3%, non-R: 11.5%), acute post-hemorrhagic anemia (30-R: 13.4%, 90-R: 14.2%, non-R: 14.5%), and genitourinary complication (30-R: 5.7%, 90-R: 2.9%, non-R: 6.2%). The most prevalent 30-day and 90-day reasons for admission were sepsis (30-R: 10.2%, 90-R: 10.8%), postoperative infection (30-R: 13.7%, 90-R: 6.5%), and genitourinary complication (30-R: 3.9%, 90-R: 4.1%). On multivariate regression analysis, surgery type, age, hypertension, and renal failure were independently associated with 30-day readmission; rheumatoid arthritis/collagen vascular diseases, and coagulopathy were independently associated with 90-day readmission.

Conclusion: In this study, we demonstrate several patient-level factors independently associated with unplanned hospital readmissions after surgical treatment intervention for spine metastases. Furthermore, we find that the most common reasons for readmission are sepsis, postoperative infection, and genitourinary complications.Level of Evidence: 3.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/BRS.0000000000003907DOI Listing
December 2020

Variation in Risk-standardized Rates and Causes of Unplanned Hospital Visits Within 7 Days of Hospital Outpatient Surgery.

Ann Surg 2020 Nov 17. Epub 2020 Nov 17.

Center for Outcomes Research and Evaluation, Yale New Haven Hospital, New Haven, Connecticut.

Objectives: The objectives of this study were to compare risk-standardized hospital visit ratios of the predicted to expected number of unplanned hospital visits within 7 days of same-day surgeries performed at US hospital outpatient departments (HOPDs) and to describe the causes of hospital visits.

Summary Of Background Data: More than half of procedures in the US are performed in outpatient settings, yet little is known about facility-level variation in short-term safety outcomes.

Methods: The study cohort included 1,135,441 outpatient surgeries performed at 4058 hospitals between October 1, 2015 and September 30, 2016 among Medicare Fee-for-Service beneficiaries aged ≥65 years. Hospital-level, risk-standardized measure scores of unplanned hospital visits (emergency department visits, observation stays, and unplanned inpatient admissions) within 7 days of hospital outpatient surgery were calculated using hierarchical logistic regression modeling that adjusted for age, clinical comorbidities, and surgical procedural complexity.

Results: Overall, 7.8% of hospital outpatient surgeries were followed by an unplanned hospital visit within 7 days. Many of the leading reasons for unplanned visits were for potentially preventable conditions, such as urinary retention, infection, and pain. We found considerable variation in the risk-standardized ratio score across hospitals. The 203 best-performing HOPDs, at or below the 5th percentile, had at least 22% fewer unplanned hospital visits than expected, whereas the 202 worst-performing HOPDs, at or above the 95th percentile, had at least 29% more post-surgical visits than expected, given their case and surgical procedure mix.

Conclusions: Many patients experience an unplanned hospital visit within 7 days of hospital outpatient surgery, often for potentially preventable reasons. The observed variation in performance across hospitals suggests opportunities for quality improvement.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/SLA.0000000000004627DOI Listing
November 2020

Resumption of Otolaryngology Surgical Practice in the Setting of Regionally Receding COVID-19.

Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 2021 04 22;164(4):788-791. Epub 2020 Sep 22.

Department of Surgery, Division of Otolaryngology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA.

The practice of otolaryngology has been drastically altered as a consequence of the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Geographic heterogeneity in COVID-19 burden has meant different regions have experienced the pandemic at different stages. Regional dynamics of COVID-19 incidence has dictated the available resources for the provision of surgical care. As regions navigate their own COVID-19 dynamics, illustrative examples of areas affected early by the COVID-19 pandemic may provide anticipatory guidance. In this commentary, we discuss our experience with performed and canceled surgical procedures across the various otolaryngology specialties at our institution over the course of regionally rising and falling incident COVID-19 cases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0194599820959671DOI Listing
April 2021

The critical threshold value of systolic blood pressure for aortic occlusion in trauma patients in profound hemorrhagic shock.

J Trauma Acute Care Surg 2020 12;89(6):1107-1113

From the Division of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, Department of Surgery (C.A.O., F.R., J.J.S., A.S., A.F.G.), Fundación Valle del Lili; Sección de Cirugía de Trauma y Emergencias (C.A.O., J.J.S, A.S, J.J.M, C.A.S, A.F.G), Hospital Universitario del Valle, Universidad del Valle, Cali, Colombia; Center for Surgery and Public Health, Department of Surgery (C.P.O., C.K.Z., J.P.H.-E.), Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health (C.P.O., C.K.Z., J.P.H.-E.), Boston, Massachusetts; Department of Trauma Critical Care (M.W.P.), Broward General Level I Trauma Center, Fort Lauderdale, Florida; Centro de Investigaciones Clínicas (Y.C., M.G., D.M.), Fundación Valle del Lili, Cali, Colombia; Department of Surgery (M.B.), University of California Riverside, Riverside, California.

Background: This study aimed to determine the critical threshold of systolic blood pressure (SBP) for aortic occlusion (AO) in severely injured patients with profound hemorrhagic shock.

Methods: All adult patients (>15 years) undergoing AO via resuscitative endovascular balloon occlusion of the aorta (REBOA) or thoracotomy with aortic cross clamping (TACC) between 2014 and 2018 at level I trauma center were included. Patients who required cardiopulmonary resuscitation in the prehospital setting were excluded. A logistic regression analysis based on mechanism of injury, age, Injury Severity Score, REBOA/TACC, and SBP on admission was done.

Results: A total of 107 patients underwent AO. In 57, TACC was performed, and in 50, REBOA was performed. Sixty patients who underwent AO developed traumatic cardiac arrest (TCA), and 47 did not (no TCA). Penetrating trauma was more prevalent in the TCA group (TCA, 90% vs. no TCA, 74%; p < 0.05) but did not modify 24-hour mortality (odds ratio, 0.51; 95% confidence interval, 0.13-2.00; p = 0.337). Overall, 24-hour mortality was 47% (50) and 52% (56) for 28-day mortality. When the SBP reached 60 mm Hg, the predicted mortality at 24 hours was more than 50% and a SBP lower than 70 mm Hg was also associated with an increased of probability of cardiac arrest.

Conclusion: Systolic blood pressure of 60 mm Hg appears to be the optimal value upon which AO must be performed immediately to prevent the probability of death (>50%). However, values of SBP less than 70 mm Hg also increase the probability of cardiac arrest.

Level Of Evidence: Therapeutic study, level IV.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/TA.0000000000002935DOI Listing
December 2020

The utility of the nationwide readmissions database in understanding contemporary transcatheter aortic valve replacement outcomes.

Eur Heart J 2020 12;41(45):4358-4359

Division of Cardiac Surgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, 15 Francis Street, Boston, MA02115, USA.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/eurheartj/ehaa581DOI Listing
December 2020

Quantifying the Impact of Care Fragmentation on Outcomes After Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation.

Am J Cardiol 2020 08 15;128:113-119. Epub 2020 May 15.

Division of Cardiac Surgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. Electronic address:

The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services has identified readmission as an important quality metric in assessing hospital performance and value of care. The aim of this study was to quantify the impact of "care fragmentation" on transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) outcomes. Readmission to nonindex hospitals was defined as any hospital other than the hospital where the TAVI was performed. In this multicenter, population-based, nationally representative study, a nationally weighted cohort of US adult patients who underwent TAVI in the National Readmission Database between 01/01/2010 and 9/31/2015 were analyzed. Patient characteristics, trends, and outcomes after 90-day nonindex readmission were evaluated. Thirty-day metric was used as a reference group for comparison. A weighted total of 51,092 patients met inclusion criteria. Overall, the 90-day readmission rate after TAVI was 27.6% (30-day reference group: 17.4%), and 42% of these readmissions were to nonindex hospitals. Noncardiac causes accounted for most nonindex readmissions, but major cardiac procedures were more likely performed at index hospitals during readmission within 90 days. Despite the high co-morbidity burden of patients readmitted to nonindex hospitals, unadjusted and risk-adjusted all-cause mortality, readmission length of stay and total hospital costs following nonindex readmission were lower compared with index readmission at 90 days. In conclusion, in this real world, nationally representative cohort of TAVI patients in the United States, care fragmentation remains prevalent and represent an enduring, residual target for future health policies. Although the impactful readmissions may be directed toward index hospitals, concerted efforts are needed to address mechanisms that increase care fragmentation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.amjcard.2020.05.005DOI Listing
August 2020

Comparison of epidemiology, treatments, and outcomes in pediatric versus adult ependymoma.

Neurooncol Adv 2020 Jan-Dec;2(1):vdaa019. Epub 2020 Feb 21.

Department of Neurosurgery, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA.

Background: Mounting evidence supports the presence of heterogeneity in the presentation of ependymoma patients with respect to location, histopathology, and behavior between pediatric and adult patients. However, the influence of age on treatment outcomes in ependymoma remains obscure.

Methods: The SEER database years 1975-2016 were queried. Patients with a diagnosis of ependymoma were identified using the International Classification of Diseases for Oncology, Third Edition, coding system. Patients were classified into one of 4 age groups: children (age 0-12 years), adolescents (age 13-21 years), young adults (age 22-45 years), and older adults (age >45 years). The weighed multivariate analysis assessed the impact of age on survival outcomes following surgical treatment.

Results: There were a total of 6076 patients identified with ependymoma, of which 1111 (18%) were children, 529 (9%) were adolescents, 2039 (34%) were young adults, and 2397 (40%) were older adults. There were statistically significant differences between cohorts with respect to race ( < .001), anatomical location ( < .001), extent of resection ( < .001), radiation use ( < .001), tumor grade ( < .001), histological classification ( < .001), and all-cause mortality ( < .001). There was no significant difference between cohorts with respect to gender ( = .103). On multivariate logistic regression, factors associated with all-cause mortality rates included males (vs females), supratentorial location (vs spinal cord tumors), and radiation treatment (vs no radiation).

Conclusions: Our study using the SEER database demonstrates the various demographic and treatment risk factors that are associated with increased rates of all-cause mortality between the pediatric and adult populations following a diagnosis of ependymoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/noajnl/vdaa019DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7212900PMC
February 2020

Comparison of in-hospital outcomes and readmissions for valve-in-valve transcatheter aortic valve replacement vs. reoperative surgical aortic valve replacement: a contemporary assessment of real-world outcomes.

Eur Heart J 2020 08;41(29):2747-2755

Division of Cardiac Surgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, 15 Francis Street, Boston, MA 02115, USA.

Aims: We sought to perform a head-to-head comparison of contemporary 30-day outcomes and readmissions between valve-in-valve transcatheter aortic valve replacement (VIV-TAVR) patients and a matched cohort of high-risk reoperative surgical aortic valve replacement (re-SAVR) patients using a large, multicentre, national database.

Methods And Results: We utilized the nationally weighted 2012-16 National Readmission Database claims to identify all US adult patients with degenerated bioprosthetic aortic valves who underwent either VIV-TAVR (n = 3443) or isolated re-SAVR (n = 3372). Thirty-day outcomes were compared using multivariate analysis and propensity score matching (1:1). Unadjusted, VIV-TAVR patients had significantly lower 30-day mortality (2.7% vs. 5.0%), 30-day morbidity (66.4% vs. 79%), and rates of major bleeding (35.8% vs. 50%). On multivariable analysis, re-SAVR was a significant risk factor for both 30-day mortality [adjusted odds ratio (aOR) of VIV-SAVR (vs. re-SAVR) 0.48, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.28-0.81] and 30-day morbidity [aOR for VIV-TAVR (vs. re-SAVR) 0.54, 95% CI 0.43-0.68]. After matching (n = 2181 matched pairs), VIV-TAVR was associated with lower odds of 30-day mortality (OR 0.41, 95% CI 0.23-0.74), 30-day morbidity (OR 0.53, 95% CI 0.43-0.72), and major bleeding (OR 0.66, 95% CI 0.51-0.85). Valve-in-valve TAVR was also associated with shorter length of stay (median savings of 2 days, 95% CI 1.3-2.7) and higher odds of routine home discharges (OR 2.11, 95% CI 1.61-2.78) compared to re-SAVR.

Conclusion: In this large, nationwide study of matched high-risk patients with degenerated bioprosthetic aortic valves, VIV-TAVR appears to confer an advantage over re-SAVR in terms of 30-day mortality, morbidity, and bleeding complications. Further studies are warranted to benchmark in low- and intermediate-risk patients and to adequately assess longer-term efficacy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/eurheartj/ehaa252DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7395321PMC
August 2020

Risk Factors for the Development of Post-Traumatic Hydrocephalus in Children.

World Neurosurg 2020 09 7;141:e105-e111. Epub 2020 May 7.

Department of Neurosurgery, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA. Electronic address:

Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate the national impact of demographic, hospital, and inpatient risk factors on posttraumatic hydrocephalus (PTH) development in pediatric patients who presented to the emergency department after a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Methods: The Nationwide Emergency Department Sample database 2010-2014 was queried. Patients (<21 years old) with a primary diagnosis of TBI and subsequent secondary diagnosis of PTH were identified using the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification coding system.

Results: We identified 1,244,087 patients who sustained TBI, of whom 930 (0.07%) developed PTH. The rates of subdural hemorrhage and subarachnoid hemorrhage were both significantly higher for the PTH cohort. On multivariate regression, age 6-10 years (odds ratio [OR], 0.6; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.38-0.93; P = 0.022), 11-15 years (OR, 0.32; 95% CI, 0.21-0.48; P < 0.0001), and 16-20 years (OR, 0.24; 95% CI, 0.15-0.37; P < 0.0001) were independently associated with decreased risk of developing hydrocephalus, compared with ages 0-5 years. Extended loss of consciousness with baseline return and extended loss of consciousness without baseline return were independently associated with increased risk of developing hydrocephalus. Respiratory complication (OR, 28.35; 95% CI, 15.75-51.05; P < 0.0001), hemorrhage (OR, 37.12; 95% CI, 4.79-287.58; P = 0.0001), thromboembolic (OR, 8.57; 95% CI, 1.31-56.19; P = 0.025), and neurologic complication (OR, 64.64; 95% CI, 1.39-3010.2; P = 0.033) were all independently associated with increased risk of developing hydrocephalus.

Conclusions: Our study using the Nationwide Emergency Department Sample database shows that various demographic, hospital, and clinical risk factors are associated with the development of hydrocephalus after traumatic brain injury.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.wneu.2020.04.216DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7484270PMC
September 2020

Thirty- and 90-Day Readmissions After Treatment of Traumatic Subdural Hematoma: National Trend Analysis.

World Neurosurg 2020 07 6;139:e212-e219. Epub 2020 Apr 6.

Department of Neurosurgery, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA; Department of Radiology & Biomedical Imaging, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA. Electronic address:

Objective: Subdural hematoma (SDH), a form of traumatic brain injury, is a common disease that requires extensive patient management and resource utilization; however, there remains a paucity of national studies examining the likelihood of readmission in this patient population. The aim of this study is to investigate differences in 30- and 90-day readmissions for treatment of traumatic SDH using a nationwide readmission database.

Methods: The Nationwide Readmission Database years 2013-2015 were queried. Patients with a diagnosis of traumatic SDH and a primary procedure code for incision of cerebral meninges for drainage were identified using the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification coding system. Patients were grouped by no readmission (Non-R), readmission within 30 days (30-R), and readmission within 31-90 days (90-R).

Results: We identified a total of 14,355 patients, with 3106 (21.6%) patients encountering a readmission (30-R: n = 2193 [15.3%]; 90-R: n = 913 [6.3%]; Non-R: n = 11,249). The most prevalent 30- and 90-day diagnoses seen among the readmitted cohorts were postoperative infection (30-R: 10.5%, 90-R: 13.0%) and epilepsy (30-R: 3.7%, 90-R: 1.1%). On multivariate logistic regression analysis, Medicare, Medicaid, hypertension, diabetes, renal failure, congestive heart failure, and coagulopathy were independently associated with 30-day readmission; Medicare and rheumatoid arthritis/collagen vascular disease were independently associated with 90-day readmission.

Conclusions: In this study, we determine the relationship between readmission rates and complications associated with surgical intervention for traumatic subdural hematoma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.wneu.2020.03.168DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7380544PMC
July 2020

Underweight patients are at just as much risk as super morbidly obese patients when undergoing anterior cervical spine surgery.

Spine J 2020 07 16;20(7):1085-1095. Epub 2020 Mar 16.

Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, Yale University School of Medicine, 47 College Street, New Haven, CT 06511, USA. Electronic address:

Background Context: Past studies have focused on the association of high body mass index (BMI) on spine surgery outcomes. These investigations have reported mixed conclusions, possible due to insufficient power, poor controlling of confounding variables, and inconsistent definitions of BMI categories (e.g. underweight, overweight, and obese). Few studies have considered outcomes of patients with low BMI.

Purpose: To analyze how anterior cervical spine surgery outcomes track with World Health Organization categories of BMI to better assess where along the BMI spectrum patients are at risk for adverse perioperative outcomes.

Design/setting: Retrospective cohort study.

Patient Sample: Patients undergoing elective anterior cervical spine surgery were abstracted from the 2005 to 2016 American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database.

Outcome Measures: Thirty-day adverse events, hospital readmissions, postoperative infections, and mortality.

Methods: Patients undergoing anterior cervical spine procedures (anterior cervical discectomy and fusion, anterior cervical corpectomy, cervical arthroplasty) were identified in the 2005 to 2016 National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database. Patients were then aggregated into modified World Health Organization categories of BMI. Odds ratios of adverse outcomes, normalized to average risk of normal weight subjects (BMI 18.5-24.9 kg/m), were calculated. Multivariate analyses were then performed on aggregated adverse outcome categories controlling for demographics (age, sex, functional status) and overall health as measured by the American Society of Anesthesiologists classification.

Results: In total, 51,149 anterior cervical surgery patients met inclusion criteria. Multivariate analyses revealed the odds of any adverse event to be significantly elevated for underweight and super morbidly obese patients (Odds Ratios [OR] of 1.62 and 1.55, respectively). Additionally, underweight patients had elevated odds of serious adverse events (OR=1.74) and postoperative infections (OR=1.75) and super morbidly obese patients had elevated odds of minor adverse events (OR=1.72). Relative to normal BMI patients, there was no significant elevation for any adverse outcomes for any of the other overweight/obese categories, in fact some had reduced odds of various adverse outcomes.

Conclusions: Underweight and super morbidly obese patients have the greatest odds of adverse outcomes after anterior cervical spine surgery. The current study identifies underweight patients as an at-risk population that has previously not received significant focus. Physicians and healthcare systems should give additional consideration to this population, as they often already do for those at the other end of the BMI spectrum.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.spinee.2020.03.007DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7380546PMC
July 2020

Risk Factors Portending Extended Length of Stay After Suboccipital Decompression for Adult Chiari I Malformation.

World Neurosurg 2020 06 5;138:e515-e522. Epub 2020 Mar 5.

Department of Neurosurgery, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut. Electronic address:

Objective: For adult patients undergoing surgical decompression for Chiari malformation type I (CM-I), the patient-level factors that influence extended length of stay (LOS) are relatively unknown. The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of patient-baseline comorbidities, demographics, and postoperative complications on extended LOS after intervention after adult CM-I decompression surgery.

Methods: A retrospective cohort study using the National Inpatient Sample years 2010-2014 was performed. Adults (≥18 years) with a primary diagnosis of CM-I undergoing surgical decompression were identified. Weighted patient demographics, comorbidities, complications, LOS, disposition, and total cost were recorded. A multivariate logistic regression was used to determine the odds ratio for risk-adjusted LOS.

Results: A total of 29,961 patients were identified, 6802 of whom (22.7%) had extended LOS. The extended LOS cohort had a significantly greater overall complication rate (normal LOS, 10.6% vs. extended LOS, 29.1%; P < 0.001) and total cost (normal LOS, $14,959 ± $6037 vs. extended LOS, $25,324 ± $21,629; P < 0.001) compared with the normal LOS cohort. On multivariate logistic regression, black race, income quartiles, private insurance, obstructive hydrocephalus, lack of coordination, fluid and electrolyte disorders, and paralysis were all independently associated with extended LOS. Additional duraplasty (P = 0.132) was not significantly associated with extended LOS after adjusting for other variables. The odds ratio for extended LOS was 2.07 (95% confidence interval, 1.59-2.71) for patients with 1 complication and 9.47 (95% confidence interval, 5.86-15.30) for patients with >1 complication.

Conclusions: Our study shows that extended LOS after adult CM-I decompression surgery may be influenced by multiple patient-level factors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.wneu.2020.02.158DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7379177PMC
June 2020

Benchmarking the value of care: Variability in hospital costs for common operations and its association with procedure volume.

J Trauma Acute Care Surg 2020 05;88(5):619-628

From the Department of Surgery (C.K.Z., K.A.D.), Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut; Center for Surgery and Public Health, Department of Surgery (C.K.Z., S.A.H.), Brigham & Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School; Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts; Department of Surgery (A.C.B.), College of Medicine, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky; Department of Surgery (J.P.M.), University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas; and Department of Surgery (K.L.S.), Stanford School of Medicine, Stanford, California.

Background: Efforts to improve health care value (quality/cost) have become a priority in the United States. Although many seek to increase quality by reducing variability in adverse outcomes, less is known about variability in costs. In conjunction with the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma Healthcare Economics Committee, the objective of this study was to examine the extent of variability in total hospital costs for two common procedures: laparoscopic appendectomy (LA) and laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC).

Methods: Nationally weighted data for adults 18 years and older was obtained for patients undergoing each operation in the 2014 and 2016 National Inpatient Sample. Data were aggregated at the hospital-level to attain hospital-specific median index hospital costs in 2019 US dollars and corresponding annual procedure volumes. Cost variation was assessed using caterpillar plots and risk-standardized observed/expected cost ratios. Correlation analysis, variance decomposition, and regression analysis explored costs' association with volume.

Results: In 2016, 1,563 hospitals representing 86,170 LA and 2,276 hospitals representing 230,120 LC met the inclusion criteria. In 2014, the numbers were similar (1,602 and 2,259 hospitals). Compared with a mean of US $10,202, LA median costs ranged from US $2,850 to US $33,381. Laparoscopic cholecystectomy median costs ranged from US $4,406 to US $40,585 with a mean of US $12,567. Differences in cost strongly associated with procedure volume. Volume accounted for 9.9% (LA) and 12.4% (LC) of variation between hospitals, after controlling for the influence of other hospital (8.2% and 5.0%) and patient (6.3% and 3.7%) characteristics and in-hospital complications (0.8% and 0.4%). Counterfactual modeling suggests that were all hospitals to have performed at or below their expected median cost, one would see a national cost savings of greater than US $301.9 million per year (95% confidence interval, US $280.6-325.5 million).

Conclusion: Marked variability of median hospital costs for common operations exists. Differences remained consistent across changing coding structures and database years and were strongly associated with volume. Taken together, the findings suggest room for improvement in emergency general surgery and a need to address large discrepancies in an often-overlooked aspect of value.

Level Of Evidence: Epidemiological, level III.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/TA.0000000000002611DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7802807PMC
May 2020

Hospital Variation in Geriatric Surgical Safety for Emergency Operation.

J Am Coll Surg 2020 06 4;230(6):966-973.e10. Epub 2020 Feb 4.

Division of General Surgery, Trauma, and Surgical Critical Care, Department of Surgery, New Haven, CT.

Background: The American College of Surgeons maintains that surgical care in the US has not reached optimal safety and quality. This can be driven partially by higher-risk, emergency operations in geriatric patients. We therefore sought to answer 2 questions: First, to what degree does standardized postoperative mortality vary in hospitals performing nonelective operations in geriatric patients? Second, can the differences in hospital-based mortality be explained by patient-, operative-, and hospital-level characteristics among outlier institutions?

Study Design: Patients 65 years and older who underwent 1 of 8 common emergency general surgery operations were identified using the California State Inpatient Database (2010 to 2011). Expected mortality was obtained from hierarchical, Bayesian mixed-effects logistic regression models. A risk-adjusted hospital-level standardized mortality ratio (SMR) was calculated from observed-to-expected in-hospital deaths. "Outlier" hospitals had an SMR 80% CI that did not cross the mean SMR of 1.0. High-mortality (SMR >1.0) and low-mortality (SMR <1.0) outliers were compared.

Results: We included 24,207 patients from 107 hospitals. SMRs varied widely, from 2.3 (highest) to 0.3 (lowest). Eleven hospitals (10.3%) were poor-performing high-SMR outliers, and 10 hospitals (9.3%) were exceptional-performing low-SMR outliers. SMR was 3 times worse in the high-SMR compared with the low-SMR group (1.7 vs 0.6; p < 0.001). Patient-, operation-, and hospital-level characteristics were equivalent among outlier-hospitals.

Conclusions: Significant hospital variation exists in standardized mortality after common general surgery operations done emergently in older patients. More than 10% of institutions have substantial excess mortality. These findings confirm that the safety of emergency operation in geriatric patients can be significantly improved by decreasing the wide variability in mortality outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jamcollsurg.2019.10.018DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7409563PMC
June 2020

Chest Trauma Outcomes: Public Versus Private Level I Trauma Centers.

World J Surg 2020 06;44(6):1824-1834

Seccion de Cirugia de Trauma y Emergencias, Universidad del Valle - Hospital Universitario del Valle, Cali, Colombia.

Background: The goal of our study was to evaluate the differences in care and clinical outcomes of patients with chest trauma between two hospitals, including one public trauma center (Pu-TC) and one private trauma center (Pri-TC).

Methods: Patients with thoracic trauma admitted from January 2012 to December 2018 at two level I trauma centers (Pu-TC: Hospital Universitario del Valle, Pri-TC: Fundación Valle del Lili) in Cali, Colombia, were included. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess for differences in in-hospital mortality, adjusting for relevant demographic and clinical characteristics.

Results: A total of 482 patients were identified; 300 (62.2%) at the Pri-TC and 182 (37.8%) at the Pu-TC. Median age was 27 years (IQR 21-36) and median Injury Severity Score was 25 (IQR 16-26). 456 patients (94.6%) were male, and the majority had penetrating trauma [total 465 (96.5%); Pri-TC 287 (95.7%), Pu-TC 179 (98.4%), p 0.08]. All patients arrived at the emergency room with unstable hemodynamics. There were no statistically significant differences in post-operative complications, including retained hemothorax [Pri-TC 19 vs. Pu-TC 18], pneumonia [Pri-TC 14 vs. Pu-TC 14], empyema [Pri-TC 13 vs. Pu-TC 13] and mediastinitis [Pri-TC 6 vs. Pu-TC 2]. Logistic regression did, however, show a higher odds of mortality when patients were treated at the Pu-TC [OR 2.27 (95% CI 1.34-3.87, p < 0.001].

Conclusions: Our study found significant statistical differences in clinical outcomes between patients treated at a Pu-TC and Pri-TC. The results are intended to stimulate discussions to better understand reasons for outcome variability and ways to reduce it.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00268-020-05400-wDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7380545PMC
June 2020

Thirty-Day Nonindex Readmissions and Clinical Outcomes After Cardiac Surgery.

Ann Thorac Surg 2020 08 21;110(2):484-491. Epub 2020 Jan 21.

Division of Cardiac Surgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. Electronic address:

Background: With increasing emphasis on readmissions as an important quality metric, there is an interest in regionalization of care to high-volume centers. As a result, care of readmitted cardiac surgery patients may be fragmented if readmission occurs at a nonindex hospital. This study characterizes the frequency, risk factors, and outcomes of nonindex hospital readmission after cardiac surgery.

Methods: In this multicenter, population-based, nationally representative sample, we used weighted 2010-2015 National Readmission Database claims to identify all US adult patients who underwent 2 of the major cardiac surgeries, isolated coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) or isolated surgical aortic valve replacement (SAVR), during their initial hospitalization. We examined characteristics, predictors, and outcomes after nonindex readmission.

Results: Overall, 1,070,073 procedures were included (844,206 CABG and 225,866 SAVR). Readmission at 30 days was 12.8% for CABG and 14.5% for SAVR. Nonindex readmissions accounted for 23% and 26% at 30 days; these were primarily noncardiac in etiology. The proportion of nonindex readmissions did not change significantly from 2010 to 2015. For CABG and SAVR, in-hospital mortality (adjusted odds ratios of 1.26 and 1.37, respectively) and major complications (odds ratios of 1.17 and 1.25, respectively) were significantly higher during nonindex versus index readmission, even after adjusting for patient risk profile, case mix, and hospital characteristics. Older age, higher income, and increased comorbidity burden were all independent predictors of nonindex readmission.

Conclusions: A considerable proportion of patients readmitted after cardiac surgery are readmitted to nonindex hospitals. This fragmentation of care may account for worse outcomes associated with nonindex readmissions in this complex population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.athoracsur.2019.11.042DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7382395PMC
August 2020

Does This Patient Have Hip Osteoarthritis?: The Rational Clinical Examination Systematic Review.

JAMA 2019 Dec;322(23):2323-2333

Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom.

Importance: Hip osteoarthritis (OA) is a common cause of pain and disability.

Objective: To identify the clinical findings that are most strongly associated with hip OA.

Data Sources: Systematic search of MEDLINE, PubMed, EMBASE, and CINAHL from inception until November 2019.

Study Selection: Included studies (1) quantified the accuracy of clinical findings (history, physical examination, or simple tests) and (2) used plain radiographs as the reference standard for diagnosing hip OA.

Data Extraction And Synthesis: Studies were assigned levels of evidence using the Rational Clinical Examination scale and assessed for risk of bias using the Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies tool. Data were extracted using individual hips as the unit of analysis and only pooled when findings were reported in 3 or more studies.

Main Outcomes And Measures: Sensitivity, specificity, and likelihood ratios (LRs).

Results: Six studies were included, with data from 1110 patients and 1324 hips, of which 509 (38%) showed radiographic evidence of OA. Among patients presenting to primary care physicians with hip or groin pain, the affected hip showed radiographic evidence of OA in 34% of cases. A family history of OA, personal history of knee OA, or pain on climbing stairs or walking up slopes all had LRs of 2.1 (sensitivity range, 33%-68%; specificity range, 68%-84%; broadest LR range: 95% CI, 1.1-3.8). To identify patients most likely to have OA, the most useful findings were squat causing posterior pain (sensitivity, 24%; specificity, 96%; LR, 6.1 [95% CI, 1.3-29]), groin pain on passive abduction or adduction (sensitivity, 33%; specificity, 94%; LR, 5.7 [95% CI, 1.6-20]), abductor weakness (sensitivity, 44%; specificity, 90%; LR, 4.5 [95% CI, 2.4-8.4]), and decreased passive hip adduction (sensitivity, 80%; specificity, 81%; LR, 4.2 [95% CI, 3.0-6.0]) or internal rotation (sensitivity, 66%; specificity, 79%; LR, 3.2 [95% CI, 1.7-6.0]) as measured by a goniometer or compared with the contralateral leg. The presence of normal passive hip adduction was most useful for suggesting the absence of OA (negative LR, 0.25 [95% CI, 0.11-0.54]).

Conclusions And Relevance: Simple tests of hip motion and observing for pain during that motion were helpful in distinguishing patients most likely to have OA on plain radiography from those who will not. A combination of findings efficiently detects those most likely to have severe hip OA.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jama.2019.19413DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7583647PMC
December 2019

Dialysis Dependence Is Associated With Significantly Increased Odds of Perioperative Adverse Events After Geriatric Hip Fracture Surgery Even After Controlling for Demographic Factors and Comorbidities.

J Am Acad Orthop Surg Glob Res Rev 2019 Aug 6;3(8):e086. Epub 2019 Aug 6.

Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT.

Previous studies evaluating the risk of perioperative adverse events after hip fracture surgery for dialysis-dependent patients are either institutional cohort studies or limited by patient numbers. The current study uses the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database's large national patient population and 30-day follow-up window to address these weaknesses.

Methods: National Surgical Quality Improvement Program databases (2006 to 2016) were queried for patients aged 60 years or older who underwent hip fracture surgery. Differences in 30-day outcomes based on preoperative dialysis dependence were compared using risk-adjusted logistic regression and coarsened exact matching for adverse events, need for revision surgery, readmission, and mortality. The proportion of adverse events that occurred before versus after discharge was also assessed.

Results: A total of 288 dialysis-dependent and 16,392 non-dialysis-dependent patients met the inclusion criteria. Matched populations controlling for demographic factors (ie, age, sex, body mass index, and functional status) and overall health (American Society of Anesthesiologists class) found dialysis-dependent patients to be associated with significantly greater odds of any adverse event (odds ratio [OR] = 1.90), major adverse event (OR = 1.77), and unplanned readmission (OR = 2.48). Increased odds of minor adverse event (OR = 1.05), return to the operating room (OR = 1.66), and death (OR = 1.42) within 30 postoperative days were also found but were not statistically significant.

Discussion: Even after controlling for demographics and health status, geriatric dialysis patients undergoing surgery for hip fracture are at significantly greater odds of adverse outcomes. Because of increased risks for geriatric dialysis patients undergoing surgery for hip fracture, surgical caution, patient counseling, and heightened surveillance must be observed throughout the perioperative period for this fragile population. Furthermore, hospitals and physicians must take the increased risks associated with dialysis into account when considering bundled payment reimbursement strategies and resource allocation for hip fracture care.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5435/JAAOSGlobal-D-19-00086DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6754213PMC
August 2019

Medicare's Hospital Acquired Condition Reduction Program Disproportionately Affects Minority-serving Hospitals: Variation by Race, Socioeconomic Status, and Disproportionate Share Hospital Payment Receipt.

Ann Surg 2020 06;271(6):985-993

Center for Healthcare Outcomes and Policy, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI.

Objective: To assess whether a hospital's percentage of Black patients associates with variations in FY2017 overall/domain-specific Hospital Acquired-Condition Reduction Program (HACRP) scores and penalty receipt. Differences in socioeconomic status and receipt of disproportionate share hospital payments (a marker of safety-net status) were also assessed.

Summary Of Background Data: In FY2015, Medicare began reducing payments to hospitals with high adverse event rates. Concern has been expressed that HACRP penalties could adversely affect minority-serving hospitals, leading to reductions in resources and exasperation of disparities among hospitals with the greatest need.

Methods: 100% Medicare FFS claims from 2013 to 2014 identified older adult inpatients, aged ≥65 years, presenting for 8 common surgical conditions. Multilevel mixed-effects regression determined differences in FY2017 HACRP scores/penalties among hospitals managing the highest decile of minority patients.

Results: A total of 695,775 patients from 2923 hospitals were included. As a hospital's percentage of Black patients increased, climbing from 0.6% to 32.5% (lowest vs highest decile), average HACRP scores also increased, rising from 5.33 to 6.36 (higher values indicate worse scores). Increases in HACRP penalties did not follow the same stepwise increase, instead exhibiting a marked jump within the highest decile of racial minority-serving extent (45.7% vs 36.7%; OR [95% CI]: 1.45[1.42-1.47]). Similar patterns were observed for high disproportionate share hospital (OR [95% CI]: 1.44 [1.42-1.47]; absolute difference: +7.4 percentage-points) and low socioeconomic status-serving (1.38[1.35-1.40]; +7.3% percentage-points) hospitals. Restricted analyses accounting for the influence of teaching status and severity of patient case-mix both accentuated disparities in HACRP penalties when limiting hospitals to those at the highest known penalty-risk (more residents-to-beds, more severe), absolute differences +13.9, +20.5 percentage-points. Restriction to high operative volume, in contrast, reduced the penalty difference, +6.6 percentage-points.

Conclusions: Minority-serving hospitals are being disproportionately penalized by the HACRP. As the program continues to develop, efforts are needed to identify and protect patients in vulnerable institutions to ensure that disparities do not increase.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/SLA.0000000000003564DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8106480PMC
June 2020

Debunking the July Effect in Cardiac Surgery: A National Analysis of More Than 470,000 Procedures.

Ann Thorac Surg 2019 09 25;108(3):929-934. Epub 2019 Jul 25.

Division of Cardiac Surgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. Electronic address:

Background: Recent studies in noncardiac surgery have described worse outcomes in the first month of training. However, the "July effect" in the context of cardiac surgery outcomes is not well understood. We examined whether patient outcomes after cardiac surgery were affected by procedure month or academic year quartile.

Methods: Using the National Inpatient Sample, we isolated all coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), surgical aortic valve replacement (AVR), mitral valve repair or replacement (MV), and isolated thoracic aortic aneurysm (TAA) replacement procedures between 2012 and 2014. For each procedure, overall trends in in-hospital mortality and hospital complications were compared by academic year quartiles (ie, between the first academic year quartile vs the fourth quartile) and by procedure month. Outcomes between teaching and nonteaching hospitals were also compared.

Results: Overall, 301,105 CABG, 111,260 AVR, 54,985 MV, and 2,655 TAA procedures met inclusion criteria. In-hospital mortality for each procedure did not vary by procedure month or academic year quartile, even after risk adjustment (all P > .05). Teaching status did not influence risk-adjusted mortality for CABG and isolated TAA replacement (both P > .05). However, teaching hospitals had significantly lower adjusted mortality than nonteaching hospitals for AVR and MV surgery (both P < .01).

Conclusions: The July effect is not evident for cardiac surgery despite preexisting notions. Teaching hospitals performed at least equivalent, if not better, for major cardiac surgery procedures. These findings highlight the pivotal role of hospital support systems to ensure the safe transition of resident classes without compromising on patient outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.athoracsur.2019.06.015DOI Listing
September 2019

Data resource profile: State Inpatient Databases.

Int J Epidemiol 2019 12;48(6):1742-1742h

Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences (NDORMS), University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ije/dyz117DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6929527PMC
December 2019

Total hip arthroplasty versus hemiarthroplasty for independently mobile older adults with intracapsular hip fractures.

BMC Musculoskelet Disord 2019 May 17;20(1):226. Epub 2019 May 17.

Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences (NDORMS), University of Oxford, Oxford, OX3 9BU, UK.

Background: Displaced intracapsular hip fractures are typically treated with hemiarthroplasty (HA) or total hip arthroplasty (THA). A number of professional bodies recommend considering THA for patients that were independently mobile and cognitively intact before injury. The aim of this study was to compare the outcomes between HA and THA for independently mobile older adults with hip fractures.

Methods: A systematic review and meta-analysis of RCTs was undertaken alongside analysis of a propensity score matched national cohort of older adults (aged > 60) with hip fractures. Participants were identified for the propensity score matched cohort from the National Hip Fracture Database (NHFD), which was linked to Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) and civil death registration data. The primary outcomes were 12-month dislocation, revision, and mortality. The secondary outcomes were length of stay, discharge home, unplanned re-admission, functional outcomes, and health-related quality of life.

Results: Five RCTs reported higher THA dislocation but this was not statistically significant (THA risk ratio [RR] 2.77, 95% CI 0.81 to 9.48). However, THA dislocation was significantly higher in the national observational dataset (sub-distribution hazard ratio [SHR] 1.73, 95% CI 1.24 to 2.41). Meta-analysis of data from four RCTs did not identify a significant difference in terms of revision (RR 1.52, 95% CI 0.56 to 4.14). However, THA revision was significantly lower in the national dataset (SHR 0.66, 95% CI 0.48 to 0.90). Meta-analysis of data from 5 RCTs suggested higher mortality amongst patients undergoing HA (RR 0.63, 95% CI 0.38 to 1.04), which was also observed within the national registry dataset (hazard ratio 0.45, 95% CI 0.37 to 0.54).

Conclusions: National clinical registries can provide important context when interpreting RCT data, which may alone be inadequate for comparing the safety profile of surgical interventions. These data suggest that THA is at significantly higher risk of dislocation but lower risk of revision within 12 months. The finding from both RCT and clinical registry data that THA is associated with lower 12-month mortality amongst the fittest patients with hip fractures requires urgent further study to determine whether or not this can be replicated in other balanced populations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12891-019-2590-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6525472PMC
May 2019

Changes in Discharge to Rehabilitation: Potential Unintended Consequences of Medicare Total Hip Arthroplasty/Total Knee Arthroplasty Bundled Payments, Should They Be Implemented on a Nationwide Scale?

J Arthroplasty 2019 06 18;34(6):1058-1065.e4. Epub 2019 Feb 18.

Department of Orthopaedics & Rehabilitation, Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT.

Background: As a part of the 2010 Affordable Care Act, Medicare was committed to changing 50% of its reimbursement to alternative payment models by 2018. One strategy included introduction of "bundled payments" or a fixed price for an episode of care. Early studies of the first operative bundles for elective total hip and knee arthroplasty (THA/TKA) suggest changes in discharge to rehabilitation. It remains unclear the extent to which such changes affect patient well-being. In order to address these concerns, the objective of this study is to estimate projected changes in discharge to various type of rehabilitation, 90-day outcomes, extent of therapy received, and patient health-related quality-of-life before and after introduction of bundled payments should they be implemented on a nationwide scale.

Methods: A nationwide policy simulation was conducted using decision-tree methodology in order to estimate changes in overt and patient-centered outcomes. Model parameters were informed by published research on bundled payment effects and anticipated outcomes of patients discharged to various types of rehabilitation.

Results: Following bundled payment introduction, discharge to inpatient rehabilitation facilities decreased by 16.9 percentage-points (95% confidence interval [CI] 16.5-17.3) among primary TKA patients (THA 16.8 percentage-points), a relative decline from baseline of 58.9%. Skilled nursing facility use fell by 24.0 percentage-points (95% CI 23.6-24.4). It was accompanied by a 36.7 percentage-point (95% CI 36.3-37.2) increase in home health agency use. Although simulation models predicted minimal changes in overt outcome measures such as unplanned readmission (TKA +0.8 percentage-points), changes in discharge disposition were accompanied by significant increases in the need for further assistive care (TKA +8.0 percentage-points) and decreases in patients' functional recovery and extent of therapy received. They collectively accounted for a 30% reduction in recovered motor gains.

Conclusion: The results demonstrate substantial changes in discharge to rehabilitation with accompanying declines in average functional outcomes, extent of therapy received, and health-related quality-of-life. Such findings challenge notions of reduced cost at no harm previously attributed to the bundled payment program and lend credence to concerns about reductions in access to facility-based rehabilitation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.arth.2019.01.068DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6884960PMC
June 2019

Association of Medicaid Expansion Policy with Outcomes in Homeless Patients Requiring Emergency General Surgery.

World J Surg 2019 06;43(6):1483-1489

Center for Surgery and Public Health, Department of Surgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA.

Background: Medicaid expansion has reduced obstacles faced in receiving care. Emergency general surgery (EGS) is a clinical event where delays in appropriate care impact outcomes. Therefore, we assessed the association between non-Medicaid expansion policy and multiple outcomes in homeless patients requiring EGS.

Methods: We used 2014 State Inpatient Database to identify homeless individuals admitted with a primary EGS diagnosis who underwent an EGS procedure. States were divided into those that did and did not implement Medicaid expansion. Multivariable quantile regression was used to examine associations between non-Medicaid expansion states and (1) length of stay and (2) total index hospital charges within the homeless population. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess the associations between non-Medicaid expansion and (1) mortality, (2) surgical complications, (3) discharge against medical advice, and (4) home healthcare.

Results: A total of 6930 homeless patients were identified. Of these, 435 (6.2%) were in non-expansion states. Non-Medicaid expansion was associated with higher charges (coef: $46,264, 95% CI 40,388-52,139). There were non-significant differences in mortality (OR 1.4, 95% CI 0.79-2.62; p = 0.2) or surgical complications (OR 1.16, 95% CI 0.7-1.8; p = 0.4). However, homeless individuals living in non-expansion states did have higher odds of being discharged against medical advice (OR 2.1, 95% CI 1.08-4.05; p = 0.02), and lower odds of receiving home healthcare (OR 0.6, 95% CI 0.4-0.8; p = 0.01).

Conclusion: Homeless patients living in Medicaid expansion states had lower odds of being discharged against medical advice, higher likelihood of receiving home healthcare and overall lower total index hospital charges.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00268-019-04932-0DOI Listing
June 2019