Laparoscopic Surgery Yields Better Results Than Open Colorectal Surgery

Laparoscopic surgery was more cost-effective and produced better patient outcomes compared to open surgery for those receiving elective colorectal resections.

Laparoscopic surgery was more cost-effective and produced better patient outcomes compared to open surgery for those receiving elective colorectal resections.

According to Deborah S. Keller, MD, Colorectal Surgical Associates, Houston, TX, “The clinical benefits of laparoscopy have been well established in colorectal surgery, however there is still significant room to increase utilization. With the pressure on providers to optimize patient outcomes and costs, we undertook this study to assess the current state of laparoscopy compared to open colorectal surgery in the US.”

To analyze the difference between procedures, Keller and colleagues conducted a study assigning 6,343 patients already undergoing elective colorectal resections between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2013 to receive either laparoscopic or open surgery.

The researchers focused on measuring complications, cost by surgical approach, length of stay, and readmission rates. The primary control factors were demographics, diagnosis, hospital and procedural characteristics, surgeon volume, and surgeon specialty.

Results showed that compared to the patients who received open surgery, the laparoscopic group had significantly shorter lengths of stay, fewer complications and readmissions, and lower mortality rates.

Furthermore, of the two patient groups, total costs were lower in those who underwent laparoscopic surgeries: $17,269 to $20,552.

Following the study results, Keller concluded, “laparoscopy is more cost-effective and produces better patient outcomes than open colorectal surgery. Minimally invasive colorectal surgery is now the standard that should be offered to patients, providing value to both patient and provider.”

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