Determining the In-Hospital Cost of Bleeding in Patients Undergoing Percutaneous Coronary Intervention

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The economic impact of bleeding in the setting of nonemergent percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is poorly understood and complicated by the variety of bleeding definitions currently employed. This retrospective analysis examines and contrasts the in-hospital cost of bleeding associated with this procedure using six bleeding definitions employed in recent clinical trials.


All nonemergent PCI cases at Christiana Care Health System not requiring a subsequent coronary artery bypass were identified between January 2003 and March 2006. Bleeding events were identified by chart review, registry, laboratory, and administrative data. A microcosting strategy was applied utilizing hospital charges converted to costs using departmental level direct cost-to-charge ratios. The independent contributions of bleeding, both major and minor, to cost were determined by multiple regression. Bootstrap methods were employed to obtain estimates of regression parameters and their standard errors.


A total of 6,008 cases were evaluated. By GUSTO definitions there were 65 (1.1%) severe, 52 (0.9%) moderate, and 321 (5.3%) mild bleeding episodes with estimated bleeding costs of $14,006; $6,980; and $4,037, respectively. When applying TIMI definitions there were 91 (1.5%) major and 178 (3.0%) minor bleeding episodes with estimated costs of $8,794 and $4,310, respectively. In general, the four additional trial-specific definitions identified more bleeding events, provided lower estimates of major bleeding cost, and similar estimates of minor bleeding costs.


Bleeding is associated with considerable cost over and above interventional procedures; however, the choice of bleeding definition impacts significantly on both the incidence and economic consequences of these events. (J Interven Cardiol 2009;22:266–273)

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