Objective - As kidney transplant is the preferred mode of management of advanced kidney disease and economic trends for kidney transplant procedures are not well known, data were analyzed to assess these trends.Data Source - Annual data for 1998 to 2008 from the Nationwide Inpatient Sample, Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality were used to analyze characteristics of patients discharged from hospitals in the United States with kidney transplant as the primary procedure.Data Synthesis/Results - The population more than 65 years old had the most significant increase in hospitalizations for kidney transplant procedures (P< .01). The mean length of stay decreased by 2.8 days over the period studied (P= .02). Mean hospital charge increased despite a decrease in length of stay resulting in a 225% increase in charge per day of hospitalization, from $6907 in 1998 to $22 484 in 2008. The national aggregate hospital charges for kidney transplant procedures rose from $0.9 billion in 1998 to $3.1 billion in 2008. Kidney transplant was overall ranked sixth by mean cost per hospitalization and ranked seventh by mean charge per hospitalization among the Clinical Classification Software's Services and Procedures in this database in 2008.Conclusion - Despite shorter hospital stays, the economic burden of kidney transplants increased from 1998 to 2008.
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