Background: Because of the emergence of readmission-related Medicare penalties, efforts are being made to identify and reduce patient readmissions. The purpose of this study was to compare rates and risk factors for 30-d readmission and hospital length of stay (LOS) after carotid endarterectomy (CEA) and carotid artery stenting (CAS) among patients treated for carotid artery stenosis in Pennsylvania. Materials and methods: Data were from the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council (PHC4). We identified 15,966 patients who underwent CEA (n = 13,557) or CAS (n = 2409) in Pennsylvania between 2011 and 2014. Logistic regression was used to determine risk factors for 30-d readmission, whereas linear regression was used to model factors influencing LOS. Propensity score analysis was used to control for imbalanced covariates between procedures. Results: Thirty-day readmission rates in Pennsylvania after CEA and CAS for carotid artery stenosis were similar (9.8% and 9.6%, respectively; P = 0.794). Not home discharge destination, Charlson comorbidity index ≥2, and LOS >1 d were all significantly associated with readmission risk. Procedure type (CEA or CAS) did not significantly influence risk. A significant difference in LOS was found between CEA and CAS, but the magnitude of the difference was small (2.38 for CAS versus 2.59 for CEA; P = 0.007). Black race, urgent and emergent cases, and not home discharges significantly increased LOS by notable amounts (1, 1.5, 3.9, and 1.9 d, respectively). Conclusions: Carotid artery stenosis patients in Pennsylvania undergoing CEA or CAS had similar 30-d readmission rates. Although LOS was significantly different, the magnitude of the difference was not large.
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