Objectives To perform a complete cost analysis comparing robot assisted radical cystectomy (RARC) versus open radical cystectomy (ORC). Material and Methods After institutional review board approval for data collection, we prospectively recorded perioperative outcomes and costs, such as hospital stay, transfusion rate, readmission rate, and medications for consecutive patients undergoing RARC or ORC. Using actual cost data, we developed a cost decision tree model to determine typical perioperative costs for both RARC and ORC. Multivariate sensitivity analysis was performed to elucidate which variables had the greatest impact on overall cost. Breakeven points with ORC were calculated using our model to better evaluate variable influence. In addition to the above modeled analysis, actual patient costs, including complications 30 days from surgery, were also compared for each procedure. Results Our model analysis showed that operative time and length of stay had the greatest impact on perioperative costs. Robotic cystectomy became more expensive than open cystectomy at the following break-even points: operating room (OR) time greater than 361 minutes, length of stay greater than 6.6 days, or robotic OR supply cost exceeding $5853. RARC was 16% more expensive when only comparing direct operative costs. Interestingly, actual total patient costs revealed a 38% cost advantage favoring RARC due to increased hospitalization costs for ORC in our cohort. Conclusions RARC can provide a cost-effective alternative to ORC with operative time and length of stay being the most critical cost determinants. Higher complication rates with ORC make total actual costs much higher than RARC.
ASJC Scopus subject areas