Background: Hospital readmissions have become a topic of focus for quality care measures and cost-reduction efforts. However, no comparative multi-institutional data on plastic surgery outpatient readmission rates currently exist. The authors endeavored to investigate hospital readmission rates and predictors of readmission following outpatient plastic surgery.
Methods: The 2011 National Surgical Quality Improvement Program database was reviewed for all outpatient procedures. Unplanned readmission rates were calculated for all 10 tracked surgical specialties (i.e., general, thoracic, vascular, cardiac, orthopedics, otolaryngology, plastics, gynecology, urology, and neurosurgery). Multivariate logistic regression models were used to determine predictors of readmission for plastic surgery.
Results: A total of 7005 outpatient plastic surgery procedures were isolated. Outpatient plastic surgery had a low associated readmission rate (1.94 percent) compared with other specialties. Seventy-five patients were readmitted with a complication. Multivariate regression analysis revealed obesity (body mass index ≥30), wound infection within 30 days of the index surgery, and American Society of Anesthesiologists class 3 or 4 physical status as significant predictors for unplanned readmission.
Conclusions: Unplanned readmission after outpatient plastic surgery is infrequent and compares favorably to rates of readmission among other specialties. Obesity, wound infection within 30 days of the index operation, and American Society of Anesthesiologists class 3 or 4 physical status are independent predictors of readmission. As procedures continue to transition into outpatient settings and the drive to improve patient care persists, these findings will serve to optimize outpatient surgery use.
CLINICAL QUESTION/LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Risk, III.