Financial impact of surgical technique in the treatment of acute appendicitis in children

Cristen Litz, Paul D. Danielson, Jay Gould, Nicole M. Chandler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Appendicitis is the most common emergent problem encountered by pediatric surgeons. Driven by improved cosmetic outcomes, many surgeons are offering pediatric patients single-incision laparoscopic appendectomy. We sought to investigate the financial impact of different surgical approaches to appendectomy. A retrospective study of patients with acute appendicitis undergoing appendectomy from February 2010 to September 2011 was conducted. Based on surgeon preference, patients underwent open appendectomy (OA), laparoscopic appendectomy (LA), or single-incision laparoscopic appendectomy (SILA). Demographic information, surgical outcomes, surgical supply costs and total direct costs were recorded. A total of 465 patients underwent appendectomy during the study. The mean age of all patients was 11.2 years (range, 1 to 18 years). There were no conversions in the LA or SILA groups. There was a significant difference among surgical technique in regard to surgical supply costs (OA §159 vs LA §650 vs SILA §814, P<0.01) and total direct costs (OA §2129 vs LA §2624 vs SILA §2991, P < 0.01). In our institution, both multiport laparoscopic and SILA carry higher costs when compared with OA, largely as a result of the cost of disposable instrumentation. Cost efficiency should be considered by surgeons when undertaking a minimally invasive approach to appendectomy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)857-860
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Surgeon
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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