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Research: Variation across centers in standardized mortality ratios for congenital diaphragmatic hernia receiving extracorporeal life support

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Research: Variation across centers in standardized mortality ratios for congenital diaphragmatic hernia receiving extracorporeal life support

J Pediatr Surg

. 2022 Jan 31;S0022-3468(22)00087-2. doi: 10.1016/j.jpedsurg.2022.01.022. Online ahead of print. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35193755/

Variation across centers in standardized mortality ratios for congenital diaphragmatic hernia receiving extracorporeal life support

Yigit S Guner 1Matthew T Harting 2Tim Jancelewicz 3Peter T Yu 4Matteo Di Nardo 5Danh V Nguyen 6Affiliations expand

Abstract

Background: We sought to elucidate the degree of variation across centers by calculating center-specific standardized mortality ratios (SMRs) for infants with congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH) requiring extracorporeal life support (ECLS).

Methods: The Extracorporeal Life Support Organization (ELSO) registry data (2000-2019) were used to estimate SMRs. Center-specific SMRs and their 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were used to identify centers with mortality as significantly worse (SW), significantly better (SB), or not different (ND) relative to the median standardized mortality rate.

Results: We identified 4,223 neonates with CDH from 109 centers. SMRs were risk-adjusted for pre-ECLS case-mix (birthweight, sex, race, 5 min Apgar, blood gases, gestational age, hernia side, prenatal diagnosis, pre-ECLS arrest, and comorbidities). Observed (unadjusted) mortality rates across centers varied substantially (range: 14.3%-90.9%; interquartile range [IQR]: 42.9%-62.1%). Thirteen centers (11.9%) had SB SMRs< 1 (SMR 0.52 to 0.84), 7 centers (6.4%) had SW SMRs>1 (SMR 1.25 to 1.43), and 89 centers (81.7%) had SMRs ND relative to the median SMR rate across all centers (i.e., SMR not different from one). Descriptive analyses demonstrated that SB centers had a lower proportion of cases with renal complications, infectious complications and discontinuation of ECLS owing to complications, as well as differences in pre-ECLS treatments and timing of CDH repair, compared to SW and ND centers.

Conclusion: This study specifically identified ECLS centers with higher and lower survival for patients with CDH, which may serve as a benchmark for institutional quality improvement. Future studies are needed to identify those specific processes at those centers that leads to favorable outcomes with the goal of improving care globally.

Level of evidence: Level III.

Keywords: CDH; ECLS; ECMO; Quality; SMR.

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