Hospital resource use and costs among abdominal aortic aneurysm repair patients admitted to the intensive care unit
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BACKGROUND: Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) repair is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. As a result, many of these patients are monitored postoperatively in the intensive care unit (ICU). However, little is known about resource utilization and costs associated with ICU admission in this population. We sought to evaluate predictors of total costs among patients admitted to the ICU after repair of nonruptured or ruptured AAA. METHODS: We retrospectively analyzed prospectively collected data (2011-2016) of ICU patients admitted after AAA repair. The primary outcome was total hospital costs. We used elastic net regression to identify pre-ICU admission predictors of hospitalization costs separately for nonruptured and ruptured AAA patients. RESULTS: We included 552 patients in the analysis. Of these, 440 (79.7%) were admitted after repair of nonruptured AAA, and 112 (20.3%) were admitted after repair of ruptured AAA. The mean age of patients with nonruptured AAA was 74 (standard deviation, 9) years, and the mean age of patients with ruptured AAA was 70 (standard deviation, 8) years. Median total hospital cost (in Canadian dollars) was $21,555 (interquartile range, $17,798-$27,294) for patients with nonruptured AAA and $33,709 (interquartile range, $23,173-$53,913) for patients with ruptured AAA. Among both nonruptured and ruptured AAA patients, increasing age, illness severity, use of endovascular repair, history of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and excessive blood loss (≥4000 mL) were associated with increased costs, whereas having an anesthesiologist with vascular subspecialty training was associated with lower costs. CONCLUSIONS: Patient-, procedure-, and clinician-specific variables are associated with costs in patients admitted to the ICU after repair of AAA. These factors may be considered future targets in initiatives to improve cost-effectiveness in this population.
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