# Outcome Comparison between Laparoscopic and Open Appendectomy: Evidence from a Nationwide Population-Based Study

PLOS ONE, Jul 2013

Background Mounting evidence supports the use of laparoscopic techniques for the treatment of simple appendicitis. However, most of the advantages of these techniques are of limited clinical relevance. This study compares the treatment outcomes of laparoscopic appendectomies and open appendectomies performed in Taiwan. Methods This study uses data from the 2007 to 2009 Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database. The study sample included 65,339 patients, hospitalized with a discharge diagnosis of acute appendicitis (33.8% underwent laparoscopic appendectomy). A generalized estimated equation (GEE) was performed to explore the relationship between the use of laparoscopy and 30-day re-admission. Hierarchical linear regressions were performed to examine the relationship between the use of laparoscopy, the length of stay (LOS), and the cost per discharge. Results A significantly lower proportion of patients undergoing laparoscopic appendectomies were re-admitted within 30 days of their index appendectomy, in comparison to patients undergoing open appendectomies (0.66% versus 1.925, p<0.001). Compared with patients undergoing open appendectomies, patients undergoing laparoscopic appendectomies had a shorter LOS (4.01 versus 5.33 days, p<0.001) and a higher cost per discharge (NT$40,554 versus NT$38,509, p<0.001. In 2007, the average exchange rate was US$1 = NT$31.0). GEE revealed that the odds ratio of 30-day readmission for patients undergoing laparoscopic appendectomy was 0.38 (95% CI = 0.33–0.46) that of patients undergoing open appendectomies, after adjusting for surgeon, hospital, and patient characteristics, as well as for the clustering effect of particular surgeons and the propensity score. Conclusion This study found that laparoscopic appendectomies had a lower 30-day re-admission rate, and a shorter LOS, but a slightly higher cost per discharge than open appendectomies.

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Chien-Che Wang, Chao-Chiang Tu, Pi-Chieh Wang, Herng-Ching Lin, Po-Li Wei. Outcome Comparison between Laparoscopic and Open Appendectomy: Evidence from a Nationwide Population-Based Study, PLOS ONE, 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0068662