This study states that Reintervention after endovascular repair (EVR) of abdominal aortic aneurysms is common. However, the cumulative financial impact of reintervention after EVR on a national scale is poorly defined. Our objective was to describe the cost to Medicare for aneurysm treatment (EVR plus reinterventions) among a cohort of patients with known follow-up for 5 years after repair.

We identified patients who underwent EVR within the Vascular Quality Initiative who were linked to their respective Medicare claims file (n = 13,995). We excluded patients who underwent EVR after September 30, 2010, and those who had incomplete Medicare coverage (n = 12,788). The remaining cohort (n = 1207) had complete follow-up until death or 5 years (Medicare data available through September 30, 2015). We then obtained and compiled the corresponding Medicare reimbursement data for the index EVR hospitalization and all subsequent reinterventions. The overall cost incurred by Medicare to reimburse for each reintervention after EVR is roughly the same as for the initial procedure itself, meaning that Medicare cost projections would be greater than $100,000 for any individual who undergoes an EVR with three reinterventions. The long-term financial impact of EVR must be considered by surgeons, patients, and healthcare systems alike as these cumulative costs may hinder the fiscal viability of an EVR-first therapeutic approach and highlight the need for judicious patient selection paradigms.

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