Rationale: Recent trends in the care and outcomes of pleural infection are not well characterized. Objectives: To investigate trends in hospital-based healthcare use, outcomes, and management of pleural infection across the United States. Methods: We identified adult hospitalizations for pleural infection from 2005 through 2014 in the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project–National Inpatient Sample using International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Edition Clinical Modification diagnosis codes. We calculated weighted estimates of national trends in hospitalization, hospital length of stay, hospital mortality, inflation-adjusted cost, and management practices. We tested trend significance using fitted regression models. Results: Over one decade, there was a significant decline in hospitalizations (54.4 per million to 41.2 per million U.S. adult population), length of stay (13.5 6 0.2 to 11.2 6 0.2 d), mortality (4.2–2.6%), and costs ($32,829 to $29,458) (all P, 0.001). Both tube thoracostomy and video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery saw an increase as the procedure of first choice, along with declining use of thoracotomy (all P, 0.001). Most patients who underwent video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (94%) or tube thoracostomy (64.9%) as the initial procedure did not require a second invasive procedure. Conclusions: Over the 21st century’s first decade and a half, inpatient costs, use, and mortality have improved among U.S. adults hospitalized with pleural infection. Simultaneously, there has been a shift toward less invasive interventions upfront.
- Empyema thoracis
- Healthcare utilization
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine