New research finds hernia surgery offers value for money

May 29, 2013

New research suggesting that elective hernia surgery offers value-for-money and improved quality of life for patients has been published by the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine. The new analysis is based on patients' own assessments of their health-related quality of life together with costs reported by hospitals. The research also indicates that keyhole surgery may offer more health benefit and value for money than open surgery for hernia operations. Recently it has been suggested that the NHS could save money by reducing access to hernia repair surgery.

An inguinal hernia – the most common type – occurs when the bowel or in the abdomen pokes through the surrounding muscle wall into the groin. It can appear as a swelling in the groin and can be painful, but surgery is not normally required immediately. If the hernia is not operated on, there is a risk that a life-threatening complication known as strangulation can occur, which requires .

Since 2009, hospitals carrying out NHS-funded surgery on , , hip and knee replacements have been required to collect data from patients assessing their own health-related quality of life using questionnaires before and after their operations. These assessments, known as patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs), are designed to enable comparisons of the health benefits resulting from different treatments.

Researchers from Imperial College London and The King's Fund used PROMs data to estimate the cost-effectiveness of and keyhole surgery for hernia repair. The results are expressed as a cost per quality-adjusted life year (QALY), a widely-used standard measure of treatment benefit. The results show that hernia surgery appears cost-effective, with an average cost per QALY of £1,881. They also show that patients report greater after than open surgery. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) normally recommends treatments costing up to £20,000 to £30,000 per QALY.

Sophie Coronini-Cronberg, from the School of Public Health at Imperial College London, who led the study, said: "Our results challenge the idea that hernia surgery has low clinical value. Based on what patients tell us about how the treatments help them, it would seem that hernia not only improves people's lives substantially but also represents good value for NHS spending.

"At present, PROMs are only being collected for a few procedures. We've shown that these reports can allow us to quantify the benefits that patients experience and also estimate the cost-effectiveness of treatments. If the government is serious about producing information on the health benefits of NHS services, then we need to collect more and properly make use of this kind of data."

Professor John Appleby, Chief Economist at The King's Fund and co-author of the study said: "The English NHS is at the forefront of collecting PROMs. This data will prove invaluable to clinicians, managers, researchers and others in analysing health outcomes so that services can be improved for patients."

This analysis follows work at the King's Fund by Prof John Appleby and colleagues estimating the cost per QALY following hip replacement operations and published by the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine alongside the extension of the work to hernia operations.

Explore further: Laparoscopic incisional hernia repair is effective choice

More information: Application of patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) data to estimate cost-effectiveness of hernia surgery in England, by Sophie Coronini-Cronberg, John Appleby and James Thompson, will be published online on Wednesday 29th May 2013 by the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine.

Related Stories

Laparoscopic incisional hernia repair is effective choice

March 25, 2013
(HealthDay)—Laparoscopic incisional hernia repair has recurrence rates comparable with open repair, according to a study published in the March issue of JAMA Surgery.

Open surgical and minimally invasive hernia repair techniques compared

March 19, 2012
The minimally invasive hernia repair procedure known as total extraperitoneal inguinal hernioplasty (TEP) was associated with higher patient satisfaction, less chronic pain and less impairment of inguinal (groin) sensation ...

Study shows cost-effectiveness and benefits to patients of early hip replacement

February 21, 2013
Early access to hip replacement is cost-effective and provides significant benefits for patients' quality of life, a study has shown.

Introducing 'more patient reality' into NHS spending decisions

January 24, 2013
A study by health economists at the University of York has, for the first time, produced an estimate of the impact on other NHS patients of new and more costly drugs and other treatments.

Study finds data on experience-related outcomes limited in children's surgery

March 25, 2013
A review of the available medical literature suggests that data on experience-related outcomes in children's surgery are limited and vary widely in methodologic quality, according to a report published Online First by JAMA ...

Holistic scoring system of obesity treatment outcomes

April 23, 2013
A new scoring system takes a holistic view of the effect of obesity treatment in patients.

Recommended for you

World's first child hand transplant a 'success'

July 19, 2017
The first child in the world to undergo a double hand transplant is now able to write, feed and dress himself, doctors said Tuesday, declaring the ground-breaking operation a success after 18 months.

Knee surgery—have we been doing it wrong?

July 18, 2017
A team of University at Buffalo medical doctors have published a study that challenges a surgical practice used for decades during arthroscopic knee surgery.

New tools help surgeons find liver tumors, not nick blood vessels

July 17, 2017
The liver is a particularly squishy, slippery organ, prone to shifting both deadly tumors and life-preserving blood vessels by inches between the time they're discovered on a CT scan and when the patient is lying on an operating ...

Researchers discover indicator of lung transplant rejection

July 13, 2017
Research by scientists at Dignity Health St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center's Norton Thoracic Institute was published in the July 12, 2017 issue of Science Translational Medicine titled "Zbtb7a induction in alveolar ...

New device could make closing surgical incisions a cinch

July 7, 2017
Like many surgeons, Dr. Jason Spector is often faced with the challenge of securely closing the abdominal wall without injuring the intestines. If the process goes awry, there can be serious consequences for patients, including ...

Success with first 20 patients undergoing minimally invasive pancreatic transplant surgery

June 29, 2017
Surgeons at Johns Hopkins Medicine report that their first series of a minimally invasive procedure to treat chronic pancreas disease, known as severe pancreatitis, resulted in shorter hospital stays, less need for opioids ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Kavincarlson
not rated yet Jun 01, 2013
This web site Is Truly wonderful and amazing information maybe there is and looking so captivating.. I look and feel good to generally be here.. Keep sharing good things with buddies.. Thanks meant for sharing...
doktersingapura.com

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.