Insurance Status, Not Race, is Associated With Use of Minimally Invasive Surgical Approach for Rectal Cancer.
OBJECTIVE: To determine the impact of race and insurance on use of minimally invasive (MIS) compared with open techniques for rectal cancer in the United States. BACKGROUND: Race and socioeconomic status have been implicated in disparities of rectal cancer treatment. METHODS: Adults undergoing MIS (laparoscopic or robotic) or open rectal resections for stage I to III rectal adenocarcinoma were included from the National Cancer Database (2010-2012). Multivariate analyses were employed to examine the adjusted association of race and insurance with use of MIS versus open surgery. RESULTS: Among 23,274 patients, 39% underwent MIS and 61% open surgery. Overall, 86% were white, 8% black, and 3% Asian. Factors associated with use of open versus MIS were black race, Medicare/Medicaid insurance, and lack of insurance. However, after adjustment for patient demographic, clinical, and treatment characteristics, black race was not associated with use of MIS versus open surgery [odds ratio [OR] 0.90, P = 0.07). Compared with privately insured patients, uninsured patients (OR 0.52, P < 0.01) and those with Medicare/Medicaid (OR 0.79, P < 0.01) were less likely to receive minimally invasive resections. Lack of insurance was significantly associated with less use of MIS in black (OR 0.59, P = 0.02) or white patients (OR 0.51, P < 0.01). However, among uninsured patients, black race was not associated with lower use of MIS (OR 0.96, P = 0.59). CONCLUSIONS: Insurance status, not race, is associated with utilization of minimally invasive techniques for oncologic rectal resections. Due to the short-term benefits and cost-effectiveness of minimally invasive techniques, hospitals may need to improve access to these techniques, especially for uninsured patients.
Turner, M; Adam, MA; Sun, Z; Kim, J; Ezekian, B; Yerokun, B; Mantyh, C; Migaly, J
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