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Orthopedics, 2020;43(2):119–125
Published Online: by:4


Although reverse total shoulder arthroplasty (RTSA) may outperform hemiarthroplasty (HSA) for acute proximal humerus fractures (PHF), both the RTSA implant and the procedure are more expensive. The goal of this study was to compare the use and longitudinal cost of care for RTSA vs HSA for the treatment of PHF. Patients were selected from a private payer database with a surgical date between 2010 and 2015. The International Classification of Diseases, 9th Revision, Clinical Modification(ICD-9-CM), codes were used to identify patients who underwent RTSA and HSA for PHF. The 1-year cost follow-up was guaranteed. During the study period, a total of 1038 patients underwent RTSA and 1046 patients underwent HSA for the treatment of PHF. A total of 601 patients who underwent RTSA and 431 patients who underwent HSA with at least 1 year of follow-up were matched by age and sex. The average Charlson Comorbidity Index for the RTSA and HSA groups was 4, indicating similar health status. From 2010 to 2015, the use of RTSA increased linearly (R2=0.986), whereas the use of HSA decreased linearly (R2=0.796). The average index admission cost was higher for RTSA than for HSA ($15,263 vs $14,356, respectively; mean difference [MD], $907; 95% confidence interval [CI], $58-$1760; P=.04). At 1 year postoperatively, however, no statistically significant difference was noted in cost (P=.535). The 1-year physical and occupational therapy cost per patient was higher after HSA than after RTSA (MD, $723; CI, $718–$728; P<.001), but no difference was noted in discharge disposition or 1-year revision or readmission rates. The results of this study suggest that despite the higher initial cost of RTSA, the total cost of care in the year after RTSA and HSA is similar. Therefore, RTSA should be considered in the appropriate clinical setting. [Orthopedics. 2020;43(2):119–125.]

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