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Meta‐analysis of the costs of carotid artery stenting and carotid endarterectomy. BJS 2017; 104: 1284-1292.

Published: 7th August 2017

Authors: E. E. de Vries, V. G. M. Baldew, H. M. den Ruijter, G. J. de Borst

Background

Carotid artery stenting (CAS) is currently associated with an increased risk of 30‐day stroke compared with carotid endarterectomy (CEA), whereas both interventions seem equally durable beyond the periprocedural period. Although the clinical outcomes continue to be scrutinized, there are few data summarizing the costs of both techniques.

Method

A systematic search was conducted in MEDLINE, Embase and Cochrane databases in August 2016 identifying articles comparing the costs or cost‐effectiveness of CAS and CEA in patients with carotid artery stenosis. Combined overall effect sizes were calculated using random‐effects models. The in‐hospital costs were specified to gain insight into the main heads of expenditure associated with both procedures.

Results

The literature search identified 617 unique articles, of which five RCTs and 12 cohort studies were eligible for analysis. Costs of the index hospital admission were similar for CAS and CEA. Costs of the procedure itself were 51 per cent higher for CAS, mainly driven by the higher costs of devices and supplies, but were balanced by higher postprocedural costs of CEA. Long‐term cost analysis revealed no difference in costs or quality of life after 1 year of follow‐up.

Conclusion

Hospitalization and long‐term costs of CAS and CEA appear similar. Economic considerations should not influence the choice of stenting or surgery in patients with carotid artery stenosis being considered for revascularization.

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