In orthognathic surgery, virtual surgical planning (VSP) is gaining popularity over traditional surgical planning (TSP); however, concerns about cost of VSP have slowed adoption of this technology. This study investigates the clinical value of VSP versus TSP over the entire clinical care continuum.
Retrospective cohort study was conducted for patients undergoing maxillomandibular surgery between 2005 and 2016 at a tertiary pediatric hospital. Clinical value, defined as patient outcomes per unit cost, was analyzed between the 2 groups with appropriate statistics.
The VSP (n = 19) and TSP (n = 10) cohorts had statistically similar hospital lengths of stay, rates of complications, readmissions, and duration of postoperative orthodontic treatment (P = 0.518, P > 0.999, P > 0.999, P = 0.812, respectively). VSP maxillomandibular procedures trended towards shorter operative times (P = 0.052). Total hospital charges were statistically similar between the TSP and VSP cohorts (P = 0.160). Medication, laboratory and testing, and room charges were also statistically similar between the TSP and VSP cohorts (P = 0.169, P = 0.953, and P = 0.196 respectively).
Indexed patient outcomes and costs incurred for maxillomandibular procedures were statistically similar between those utilizing TSP or VSP leading us to conclude that these 2 methods are associated with similar clinical value. This retrospective analysis should be followed with prospective data to give patients and insurers the best estimate of clinical value utilizing TSP and VSP.