Operating Room Versus Office-Based Injection Laryngoplasty: A Comparative Analysis of Reimbursement

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Abstract

Background:

Injection laryngoplasty (IL) continues to evolve as new indications, techniques, approaches, and injection materials are developed. Although historically performed under local or general anesthesia in the operating room suite, IL is now increasingly being performed in an office-based setting. This report presents the results of a reimbursement analysis comparing office-based versus operative IL.

Objective:

The objective of this study was to compare the reimbursement of office-based injection laryngoplasty with the reimbursement of performing the same procedure in the operating room.

Design:

The authors conducted reimbursement and outcome analysis through retrospective office chart and hospital record review.

Methods:

A retrospective review was performed of the hospital records of patients having undergone injection laryngoplasty at the University of Pittsburgh Voice Center from July 1998 through March 2005. Group I included patients who underwent IL in the operating room, whereas group II included those who had office-based IL. A reimbursement analysis for both groups was then performed comparing surgeon fees, anesthesia, and hospital charges and reimbursement. The clinical efficacy of IL performed in either office versus operating room settings was measured by comparing the pre- and postintervention Voice Handicap Index-10 scores for all patients. A predictive model of potential cost savings is developed based on the results of the analysis.

Results:

Average reimbursement was $2,505 for group I (n = 108) and $496 for group II (n = 50). This reimbursement differential was preserved across the various insurance types examined. There was no significant difference in Voice Handicap Index-10 change after surgery between group I and II.

Conclusions:

Office-based IL is both clinically and financially effective, providing patients with a convenient and flexible alternative to operating room-based intervention for glottal insufficiency.

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