This study aimed to calculate one-year total costs of incisional glaucoma surgery and laser therapy in a real-world clinical setting.
We conducted a retrospective cohort study from July 2010 to March 2021 using the Diagnosis Procedure Combination database. We included patients hospitalized for incisional glaucoma surgery (trabeculectomy, trabeculotomy, tube shunt surgery, Ex-PRESS surgery, or iStent implantation) or laser therapy (laser peripheral iridotomy, surgical iridectomy, laser trabeculoplasty, cyclocryotherapy, or cyclophotocoagulation). The outcomes were total costs, including costs of hospitalization, re-admissions, antiglaucoma drugs, ophthalmic examinations, and outpatient visits for incisional glaucoma surgery and laser therapy within one year.
We identified 49,202 eligible hospitalizations. The one-year median total cost was 707,497 yen [interquartile range: 546,887–944,664 yen]. The median total cost was the highest in patients undergoing tube shunt surgery, followed by Ex-PRESS surgery, iStent implantation, and trabeculectomy. The number and cost of postoperative outpatient visits and length of hospital stay were higher in patients who underwent trabeculectomy and Ex-PRESS surgery than in those after tube shunt surgery. The total costs of laser therapies were lower than those of incisional glaucoma surgeries. The total cost was the highest in the 0–19 age group (856,398 [649,419–1,258,844] yen).
Tube shunt surgery was the costliest in terms of total one-year costs. Trabeculectomy and Ex-PRESS surgery were associated with long hospital stays and incurred high postoperative costs. The costs of laser therapies were relatively low. However, cost-effectiveness of laser therapies compared with incisional surgeries needs to be analyzed in future research.
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