Background The components separation technique (CST) is performed through an open or endoscopic approach. It is unclear whether the costs associated with the endoscopic instruments outweigh any clinical benefit derived from their use and the avoidance of lipocutaneous flaps. This study aimed to compare the direct costs associated with each approach. Methods A retrospective review of patients undergoing open or endoscopic CST between 2005 and 2009 was performed. The review compared patient-related variables, length of hospital stay, wound morbidity, and costs associated with the index operation and encounters within a 6-month period. Results Of the 54 patients identified, 59% underwent endoscopic repair, and 41% had an open CST repair. The patients were similar in age, American Society of Anesthesiology (ASA) score, gender, body mass index (BMI), number of prior surgeries, active abdominal infection, defect size, operating room time, and length of hospital stay. The overall median direct costs were similar between endoscopic and open CST ($9,942 vs. $17,701; p = 0.09). No difference was detected in median operating room costs, but an approximate $7,000 difference was noted between endoscopic and open CST ($1,871 vs. $8,705; p = 0.96). The median mesh costs differed significantly between endoscopic and open CST ($733 vs. $8,415; p = 0.05) as did stapler use costs ($35 vs. $190; p = 0.002). The median cost of endoscopic instruments was $848. Open CST had a 41% major wound morbidity rate compared with 19% in the endoscopic group (p = 0.07). Most of the encounters in the 6-month follow-up period (85%) were related to wound morbidity. The median cumulative direct costs differed between endoscopic and open CST at 3 and 6 months ($12,528 vs. $20,326; p = 0.05). Conclusions In a similarly complex group of patients, the total direct costs associated with endoscopic and open CST were similar. Endoscopic instruments made a marginal contribution to the total overall costs, but significant cost contributors were the use of biologic grafts and wound morbidity.
- Component separation
- Hernia repair