This study states that Lower extremity bypass surgery remains an important treatment option for patients with critical limb ischemia (CLI), but is resource intensive. We sought to evaluate the cost and Medicare reimbursement for lower extremity bypass surgery in patients with CLI.

Hospital cost accounting systems were queried for total technical and professional costs incurred and reimbursement received for patients with CLI undergoing lower extremity bypass at our center between 2011 and 2017. Patients were identified by assignment to Diagnosis-Related Group (DRG) 252, 253, or 254 (other vascular procedure with major complication/comorbidity, with complication/comorbidity, and without complication/comorbidity, respectively). Additional clinical data were incorporated from the Vascular Quality Initiative clinical registry. For non-Medicare patients, reimbursement was indexed to Medicare rates. Contribution margins (reimbursement minus cost) from technical and professional services were analyzed for each patient and summarized by DRG. We compared technical, professional, and total costs; reimbursement; and contribution margins across DRGs using univariate statistics and evaluated factors associated with total contribution margin using median quantile regression. 

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