Patterns of Specialty-Based Referral and Perioperative Outcomes for Women With Endometrial Cancer Undergoing Hysterectomy

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To examine patterns of referral to gynecologic oncologists and perioperative outcomes based on surgeon specialty for women with endometrial cancer and hyperplasia.

METHODS:

The National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database was used to perform a retrospective cohort study of women with endometrial cancer and hyperplasia who underwent hysterectomy from 2014 to 2015. Patients were stratified based on treatment by a gynecologic oncologist or other health care provider. Patterns of referral to a gynecologic oncologist was the primary outcome, and mode of hysterectomy and complications were secondary outcomes.

RESULTS:

A total of 6,510 women were identified. Gynecologic oncologists performed 90.9% (95% confidence interval [CI] 90.1–91.7) of the hysterectomies for endometrial cancer, 66.8% (95% CI 63.1–70.4) for complex atypical endometrial hyperplasia, and 49.3% (95% CI 44.7–53.8) for endometrial hyperplasia without atypia. Older women and those with a higher American Society of Anesthesiology score were more likely to be treated by an oncologist. Minimally invasive hysterectomy was performed in 73.6% (95% CI 72.1–75.1) of women with endometrial cancer operated on by gynecologic oncologists compared with 73.8% (95% CI 68.8–78.2) of those treated by other physicians (odds ratio [OR] 0.99, 95% CI 0.80–1.23); lymphadenectomy was performed in 56.3% of women treated by gynecologic oncologists compared with 34.8% of those treated by other specialists (OR 2.42, 95% CI 1.99–2.94). Severe complications were uncommon and there was no difference in complication rates based on specialty, 2.6% (95% CI 2.2–3.1) compared with 2.0% (95% CI 0.8–3.3).

CONCLUSION:

Gynecologic oncologists provide care for the majority of women with endometrial cancer who undergo hysterectomy in the United States and are also involved in the care of a large percentage of women with endometrial hyperplasia.

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