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Patients' Length of Stay for Angioplasty Declines

Large-scale study finds that the average hospital stay has declined by 6.5 percent since 1998

WEDNESDAY, May 17 (HealthDay News) -- Between 1998 and 2004, there was a progressive reduction in the length of stay for patients undergoing percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI), according to research presented recently at the American Heart Association's 7th Scientific Forum on Quality of Care and Outcomes Research in Washington, D.C.

Noah Jones, M.D., of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and colleagues analyzed 1998-2004 data on 86,097 PCI patients from the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Cardiovascular Consortium.

The researchers found that the average length of stay decreased from 3.21 days in 1998 to three days in 2004, a reduction of 6.5 percent. They also found that the major independent factors affecting length of stay were cardiogenic shock (1.5 days), myocardial infarction within 12 hours (1.43 days) and within 12-24 hours (1.32 days), baseline creatinine over 2.0 mg/dL (1.18 days), emergency PCI (1.32 days), left ventricular ejection fraction less than 40 percent (1.16 days) and recent gastrointestinal bleeding (1.16 days).

The decline in length of stay may result from changes in PCI practice and quality improvement efforts. "Predictive models for length of stay may have a role in evaluating temporal trends and the results of quality improvement efforts," the authors conclude.

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