Total hip replacement RVUs: 6 key points

Written by Laura Dyrda | September 23, 2017 | Print  |

A new study in the Journal of Arthroplasty examined the RVUs for primary and revision total hip replacement to distinguish the cost difference between surgeons on an annual basis.


Study authors examined 103,702 patients who underwent primary total hip replacement and 7,273 patients who underwent revision total hip replacement from the National Statewide Quality Inpatient database. Key findings include:


1. Mean RVU was 21.24 for primary hip replacement and 30.27 for revision total hip replacement.


2. On average, operative time for total hip replacements was 94 minutes, ranging from 30 minutes to 480 minutes, compared to around 152 minutes for revision total hip replacement, ranging from 30 minutes to 475 minutes.


3. The RVU per minute was 0.260 on average for primary hip replacement, ranging from 0.04 to 0.73. For revision total hip replacement, the average RVU per minute was 0.249, ranging from 0.06 to 1.0.


4. The average dollar amount for primary total hip replacement was:


• Per minute: $9.33
• Per case: $877.12
• Per day: $6,139


5. The average dollar amount for revision total hip replacement was:


• Per minute: $8.90
• Per case: $1,352.86
• Per day: $5,411.44


6. Study authors found a projected $116,543.53 annual cost difference between surgeons. "The RVU per minute for primary (0.260) being significantly greater than revision THR (0.248) and an annualized $116,543.53 cost difference, reveal that although revision THAs are more complex cases requiring longer operative time, greater technical skill and aftercare, compensation per time is not greater."

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