Assessment of the “Weekend Effect” in Lower Extremity Vascular Trauma

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Background: Studies suggest that patients admitted on weekends may have worse outcomes as compared with those admitted on weekdays. Lower extremity vascular trauma (LEVT) often requires emergent surgical intervention and might be particularly sensitive to this “weekend effect.” The objective of this study was to determine if a weekend effect exists for LEVT. Methods: The National and Nationwide Inpatient Sample Database (2005–2014) was queried to identify all adult patients who were admitted with an LEVT diagnosis. Patient and hospital characteristics were recorded or calculated and outcomes including in-hospital mortality, amputation, length of stay (LOS), and discharge disposition were assessed. Independent predictors of outcomes were identified using multivariable regression models. Results: There were 9,282 patients admitted with LEVT (2,866 weekend admissions vs. 6,416 weekday admissions). Patients admitted on weekends were likely to be younger than 45 years (68% weekend vs. 55% weekday, P < 0.001), male (81% weekend vs. 75% weekday, P < 0.001), and uninsured (22% weekend vs. 17% weekday, P < 0.001) as compared with patients admitted on weekdays. There were no statistically significant differences in mortality (3.8% weekend vs. 3.3% weekday, P = 0.209), amputation (7.2% weekend vs. 6.6% weekday, P = 0.258), or discharge home (57.4% weekend vs. 56.1% weekday, P = 0.271). There was no clinically significant difference in LOS (median 7 days weekend vs. 7 days weekday), P = 0.009. On multivariable regression analyses, there were no statistically significant outcome differences between the groups. Conclusions: This study did not identify a weekend effect in LEVT patients in the United States. This suggests that factors other than the day of admission may be important in influencing outcomes after LEVT.

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