Purpose: To compare the costs associated with ultrasound (US)-guided hospital-based (UGHB), CT-guided hospital-based (CTG), and US-guided office-based (UGOB) percutaneous renal biopsy (PRB) for small renal masses (SRMs). Methods: We retrospectively analyzed patient demographics, tumor characteristics, R.E.N.A.L. nephrometry scores, and cost data of patients undergoing PRB for SRM at our institution from May 2012 to September 2015. Cost data, including facility costs, professional fees, and pathology, were obtained from the departments of urology, radiology, and pathology. Results: A total of 78 patients were included in our analysis: 19, 31, and 28 UGHB, CTG, and UGOB, respectively. There was no difference in age, gender distribution, or tumor size among the three groups (p-values 0.131, 0.241, and 0.603, respectively). UGOB tumors had lower R.E.N.A.L. nephrometry scores (p = 0.008). There were no differences in nondiagnostic rates between the UGHB, CTG, and UGOB groups [4 (21%), 5 (16%), and 6 (21%)] (p = 0.852). There were no differences in final tumor treatment strategies utilized among the UGHB, CTG, and UGOB groups (p = 0.447). There were 0, 2 (6%), and 0 complications in the UGHB, CTG, and UGOB biopsy groups. Total facility costs were $3449, $3280, and $1056 for UGHB, CTG, and UGOB PRB, respectively (p < 0.0001). There was no difference between the urologist's and radiologist's professional fees (p = 0.066). Total costs, including facility costs, pathology fees, and professional fees, were $4598, $4470, and $2129 for UGHB, CTG, and UGOB renal biopsy, respectively (p < 0.0001). Conclusion: For select patients with less anatomically complex, exophytic, and posteriorly located tumors, UGOB PRB provides equivalent diagnostic and complication rates while being significantly more cost-effective than either UGHB or CTG renal biopsy.
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