Laparoscopic versus open retroperitoneal lymph node dissection: A cost analysis

Kenneth Ogan, Yair Lotan, Kenneth Koeneman, Margaret S Pearle, Jeffrey A Cadeddu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: Laparoscopic retroperitoneal lymph node dissection is significantly less morbid than open retroperitoneal lymph node dissection but it is generally more costly due to longer operative time and disposable equipment. In response to budgetary pressure at our large county hospital we identified the cost components of laparoscopic retroperitoneal lymph node dissection that could be targeted to decrease procedure costs before expanding our laparoscopic retroperitoneal lymph node dissection program. Materials and Methods: A comprehensive literature review of open and laparoscopic retroperitoneal lymph node dissection was performed and certain parameters were abstracted, including operative time and equipment, hospital stay, perioperative complications and surgical success rates. Using these data the projected overall cost and individual cost centers at our institution were compared for open and laparoscopic retroperitoneal lymph node dissection. Decision tree analysis models were devised to estimate the cost of each treatment using commercially available software. We performed 1 and 2-way sensitivity analysis to evaluate the effect of individual treatment variables on overall cost. Base case analysis involved a young man with clinical stage I nonseminomatous testicular cancer who was a candidate for retroperitoneal lymph node dissection. Results: Based on a review of the costs at our institution open retroperitoneal lymph node dissection was a less costly procedure at $7,162 versus $7,804 for the laparoscopic approach. The slight cost superiority of the open approach was due to significantly lower costs associated with operating room time and equipment. On the other hand, the laparoscopic procedure showed a cost advantage for hospital stay. On 1-way sensitivity analysis laparoscopic dissection was less costly when operative time was less than 3.6 hours, hospitalization was less than 2.2 days or laparoscopic equipment costs were less than $768. On 2-way sensitivity analysis the laparoscopic approach was cost advantageous when performed in less than 5 hours or when the patient was discharged home within 2 days postoperatively. Conclusions: The primary cost variables for surgical treatment for testicular cancer include operative time, hospital stay and equipment cost. According to published data and decision tree analysis open retroperitoneal lymph node dissection is slightly less costly (less than $650) than laparoscopic retroperitoneal lymph node dissection for the surgical treatment of clinical stage I nonseminomatous testicular cancer at our institution. Our model identifies several measures that can be applied at any institution to render laparoscopic retroperitoneal lymph node dissection economically superior to the open approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1945-1949
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Urology
Volume168
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2002

Keywords

  • Costs and cost analysis
  • Laparoscopy
  • Lymph node excision
  • Neoplasm metastasis
  • Testis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Laparoscopic versus open retroperitoneal lymph node dissection: A cost analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this