To compare the occurrence of short-term postoperative complications between inpatient and outpatient anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction.
The ACS National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP) database was utilized to identify patients undergoing arthroscopic anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR) from 2007 to 2017. A total of 18,052 patients were available for analysis following application of exclusion criteria. Patients were categorized based on location of surgery. Inpatients and outpatient ACLR groups were matched by demographics and preoperative laboratory values and differences in 30-day complication rates following surgery were assessed. Significance was set with alpha < 0.05.
From 2007 to 2017, there was an increasing frequency for outpatient ACLR (p < 0.001), while the incidence of inpatient ACLR remained largely constant (n.s). Groups were matched to include 1818 patients in each cohort. Within the first 30 days of surgery, patients in the inpatient ACLR group experienced significantly greater rates of superficial incisional SSI (0.6% vs 0.1%, p = 0.026) and composite surgical complications (0.6% vs 0.2%, p = 0.019), as well as a greater rate of reoperation (0.7% vs 0.2%, p = 0.029). Inpatient procedures also demonstrated a greater rate of deep surgical incisional SSI (0.2% vs 0.0%, n.s) and readmission to hospital (0.8% vs 0.7%, n.s).Outpatient ACLR procedures were also associated with a significantly greater relative value unit (RVU)/h compared with inpatient ACLRs (0.17 vs 0.14, p < 0.001).