Objective: To evaluate the impact of surgeon and hospital case volume, and other related variables, on short-term outcomes after surgery for ovarian cancer.
Methods: The Maryland Health Service Cost Review Commission database was accessed for ovarian cancer surgical cases including both oophorectomy and any staging/cytoreductive surgical procedure from 2001 to 2008. Multivariate logistic regression analyses and multiple linear regression models were used to evaluate for significant associations between surgeon and hospital case volume, as well as other independent variables, and the risk of in-hospital death, extent of surgery, length of hospital stay, and hospital-related cost of care.
Results: Overall, 1894 primary ovarian cancer operations were performed by 352 surgeons at 43 hospitals. After controlling for the effects of all variables, the only independently significant factors associated with the risk of in-hospital death were surgery by a high-volume surgeon and an APR-DRG mortality risk score of 4. Ovarian cancer surgery performed by a high-volume surgeon was associated with a 69% reduction in the risk of in-hospital death. Surgery at a high-volume hospital was an independent positive predictor of a cytoreductive procedure. A statistically significant negative correlation was observed between surgery at a high-volume hospital and both length of hospital stay and hospital-related cost.
Conclusions: After controlling for other factors, ovarian cancer surgery performed by a high-volume surgeon is associated with a 69% reduction in the risk of in-hospital death, while high-volume hospital care is associated with increased likelihood of cytoreduction, shorter length of stay, and lower hospital-related cost of care.