Ambulatory Laryngopharyngeal Surgery: Evaluation of the National Survey of Ambulatory Surgery

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To determine the demographics and perioperative outcomes of ambulatory laryngopharyngeal surgery in the United States and to investigate potential changes over a 10-year period.


Cross-sectional, population-based study of representative US ambulatory surgery data.


The National Survey of Ambulatory Surgery (NSAS).


The study included all patient records from the 1996 and 2006 National Survey of Ambulatory Surgery databases with at least 1 surgery performed on the pharynx or larynx. By definition, the surgeries were outpatient and did not require an overnight stay within the facility.

Main Outcome Measures

Data regarding sex, age, facility type, principal payer, anesthesia type and administration, diagnosis, type of surgery, frequency of reported complications, and patient disposition were extracted and analyzed.


In 1996 and 2006, a total of 176 305 (95% CI, 146 954-205 657; mean [SD] age, 37 [26] years) and 189 930 (95% CI, 135 827-244 003; mean [SD] age, 45 [22] years) patients, respectively, underwent ambulatory laryngopharyngeal surgery. No significant changes were noted in the number, demographics, and outcomes of the patients during the 10-year period. The patients were more likely to be men aged 45 to 64 years and to have their surgery performed in a hospital under general anesthesia. The unexpected admission rate after laryngopharyngeal surgery was less than 4%. While minor complications were present in approximately 9% of all surgeries, no serious adverse events occurred in this representative population.


Despite the growth in the US population, the number of patients who underwent ambulatory laryngopharyngeal surgery did not change significantly during the study period. The complication rates of ambulatory laryngopharyngeal surgeries are relatively low, demonstrating the safety of these procedures.

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