Background The aim of the study was to assess the rate of 30-d hospital readmissions after ambulatory laparoscopic cholecystectomy. Materials and methods The 2009 to 2011 State Ambulatory Surgery and Services and State Inpatient Databases from California, Florida, and New York were analyzed to evaluate the incidence of 30-d readmissions after laparoscopic cholecystectomy performed in outpatient settings. Hospital transfers and the principal diagnoses of hospital readmission were analyzed as secondary outcomes. Multilevel generalized mixed linear regression analyses with fixed and random effects were used to evaluate variables associated with increased likelihood of readmissions. Results A total of 230,745 encounters for ambulatory laparoscopic cholecystectomies performed in 890 ambulatory facilities between 2009 and 2011 in the three states were analyzed. The rate of 30-d readmission was 20.2 per 1000 discharges. The rate of direct transfers from the ambulatory surgery center to an acute care hospital was 0.6 per 1000 discharges. The most common diagnoses of readmission were surgical complications, postoperative pain, infection, and nausea or vomiting. After adjusting for comorbidities, increasing age, male sex, non-Hispanic white race/ethnicity, any nonprivate insurance type, diagnosis of acute cholecystitis, use of intraoperative cholangiography, and having the procedure performed on a weekend were significantly associated with increased odds of 30-d readmissions. Conclusions This large-state data analysis reveals that the unplanned admission and readmission rates after laparoscopic cholecystectomy are very low. Some causes of readmission (e.g., pain, nausea, and vomiting) are modifiable by the intervention of surgeons and anesthesia providers.
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