Operator-Directed Procedural Sedation in the Congenital Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory

Michael L. O'Byrne, Marisa E. Millenson, James M. Steven, Matthew J. Gillespie, Yoav Dori, Andrew C. Glatz, Jonathan J. Rome

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Objectives: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the association between the method of procedural sedation and outcomes for congenital cardiac catheterization procedures. Background: The safety of operator-directed sedation (ODS)in the pediatric/congenital cardiac catheterization laboratory has been questioned. To our knowledge, the relative safety of ODS versus general anesthesia (GA)in these cases has not to date been critically evaluated. Methods: A single-center retrospective cohort study was performed to compare the relative safety, cost, and times of catheterization procedures performed with ODS and those performed with GA from a cardiac anesthesiologist. The risk of adverse outcomes was compared using propensity-score-adjusted models. Using the same propensity score, procedure times and relative charges were also compared. Results: Over the study period, 4,424 procedures in 2,547 patients were studied. Of these, 27% of cases were performed with ODS. ODS procedures were 70% diagnostic procedures, 17% device closure of patent ductus arteriosus, 5% balloon pulmonary valvuloplasty, and 3% pulmonary artery angioplasty. The risk of adverse event in adjusted models for ODS cases was significantly lower than in GA cases (odds ratio: 0.66; 95% confidence interval: 0.45 to 0.95; p = 0.03). Total room time and case time were also significantly shorter (p < 0.001). Professional (charge ratio: 0.88; p < 0.001)and hospital (charge ratio: 0.84; p < 0.001)charges for ODS cases were also lower than those for GA cases. Conclusions: This study demonstrates that clinical judgment can identify subjects in whom ODS is not associated with increased risk of adverse events. The use of ODS was associated with reduced case times and charges. In combination, these findings suggest that the selective use of ODS can allow for greater efficiency and higher value care without sacrificing safety.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)835-843
Number of pages9
JournalJACC: Cardiovascular Interventions
Issue number9
StatePublished - May 13 2019


  • anesthesia
  • cost
  • outcomes
  • pediatric cardiology


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