Association of Hospital Volume with Laryngectomy Outcomes in Patients with Larynx Cancer

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26 Scopus citations


Importance: A volume-outcome association exists for larynx cancer surgery, but to date it has not been investigated for specific surgical procedures. Objectives: To characterize the volume-outcome association specifically for laryngectomy surgery and to identify a minimum hospital volume threshold associated with improved outcomes. Design, Setting, and Participants: In this cross-sectional study, the Nationwide Inpatient Sample was used to identify 45156 patients who underwent laryngectomy procedures for a malignant laryngeal or hypopharyngeal neoplasm between January 2001 and December 2011. The analysis was performed in 2018. Hospital laryngectomy volume was modeled as a categorical variable. Main Outcomes and Measures: Associations between hospital volume and in-hospital mortality, complications, length of hospitalization, and costs were examined using multivariate logistic regression analysis. Results: Among 45 156 patients (mean age, 62.6 years; age range, 20-96 years; 80.2% male) at 5516 hospitals, higher-volume hospitals were more likely to be teaching hospitals in urban locations; were more likely to treat patients who had hypopharyngeal cancer, were of white race/ethnicity, were admitted electively, had no comorbidity, and had private insurance; and were more likely to perform flap reconstruction or concurrent neck dissection. After controlling for all other variables, hospitals treating more than 6 cases per year were associated with lower odds of surgical and medical complications, with a greater reduction in the odds of complications with increasing hospital volume. High-volume hospitals in the top-volume quintile (>28 cases per year) were associated with decreased odds of in-hospital mortality (odds ratio, 0.45; 95% CI, 0.23-0.88), postoperative surgical complications (odds ratio, 0.63; 95% CI, 0.50-0.79), and acute medical complications (odds ratio, 0.63; 95% CI, 0.48-0.81). A statistically meaningful negative association was observed between very high-volume hospital care and the mean incremental length of hospitalization (-3.7 days; 95% CI, -4.9 to -2.4 days) and hospital-related costs (-$4777; 95% CI, -$9463 to -$900). Conclusions and Relevance: Laryngectomy outcomes appear to be associated with hospital volume, with reduced morbidity associated with a minimum hospital volume threshold and with reduced mortality, morbidity, length of hospitalization, and costs associated with higher hospital volume. These data support the concept of centralization of complex care at centers able to meet minimum volume thresholds to improve patient outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)62-70
Number of pages9
JournalJAMA Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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