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Management of portal vein thrombosis in cirrhotic patients [Meeting Abstract]

Carney, B; Zhan, C; Li, C; Zhu, Y; Weinberger, H; Horn, C; Aaltonen, E; Dagher, N; Laville, M; Olsen, S; Sista, A; Hickey, R; Taslakian, B
Purpose: To compare the efficacy of transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) to anticoagulation and no treatment in cirrhotic patients with portal vein thrombosis (PVT). Materials: This single-center retrospective study evaluated 64 consecutive cirrhotic patients with imaging diagnosis of PVT between November 2005 and July 2019. 15 patients were excluded due to lack of adequate follow-up imaging. Of the remaining 49 patients, 11 (22%) were female. The median age was 61.5 (range, 24-80) years. 9 (18%) patients were treated with TIPS, 12 (24%) with anticoagulation, and 28 (57%) received no treatment. Demographic and clinical data were collected by reviewing the electronic medical record. PVT was evaluated using contrast-enhanced CT or MRI. Thrombus burden in the main portal (MPV), superior mesenteric (SMV), and splenic (SV) vein was graded as follows: grade 1, < 25%; grade 2, 26-50%; grade 3, 51-75%; and grade 4, > 75% of the luminal diameter. Yerdel scoring system was also used to evaluate the extent of portomesenteric thrombus. Thrombus burden at 6 and 12 months was compared to baseline imaging. Patient survival was estimated using Kaplan-Meier analysis. The extent of baseline thrombus was compared using Kruskal-Wallis test. Treatment response was analyzed by chi square test.
Result(s): There was no statistically significant difference in baseline thrombus burden between the 3 groups (MPV, P = 0.345; SMV, P = 0.244; SV, P = 0.541; Yerdel grade, P = 0.230). At 6 months, 87.5%, 58.3%, and 4.8% patients demonstrated complete or partial recanalization in the TIPS, anticoagulation, and no treatment groups respectively (TIPS/no treatment, P <0.0001; TIPS/anticoagulation, P = 0.163). At 12 months, 100%, 57.1%, 11.1% patients demonstrated complete or partial recanalization in the TIPS, anticoagulation, and no treatment groups respectively (TIPS/no treatment, P <0.0001; TIPS/ anticoagulation, P = 0.051). The overall survival between the 3 groups was not significantly different (P = 0.788) Conclusion(s): TIPS has significantly higher recanalization rate compared to no treatment and has a trend towards higher recanalization rate than that of anticoagulation at 6 and 12 months in cirrhotic patients with PVT.
ISSN: 1535-7732
CID: 4325612

Descriptive revenue analysis of 100 patients in an interventional oncology service line: understanding revenue sources in interventional radiology [Meeting Abstract]

Ruohoniemi, D; Taslakian, B; Chong, A; Aaltonen, E; Horn, C; Sista, A; Hickey, R
Purpose: As interventional radiology (IR) transitions to a clinical model and reimbursement patterns change, quantifying revenue may help emphasize IR's value. This study sought to quantify the total and relative contributions of evaluation and management (E&M), diagnostic imaging, and procedural services to total revenue and work relative value units (wRVU) within an academic interventional oncology service line. Materials: This study included a retrospective review of 100 consecutive interventional oncology patients with an index procedure between July 1, 2017, and December 30, 2017. Patient charts were reviewed for the 3 months prior to the first procedure and 6 months beyond the final procedure to capture pre- and postprocedural revenue. Patient demographics and current procedural terminology (CPT) codes associated with each IR encounter were collected. The wRVU and total revenue based on the national payment amount were extracted from the 2019 Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Physician Fee Schedule database.
Result(s): The 100 patients (66% male, mean age 65.6 years) underwent a total of 230 procedures, most often for treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma (71%). Procedures included radioembolization (39.1%), MAA mapping (32.6%), hepatic ablation (17.8%), TACE/bland embolization (9.1%), and renal ablation (1.3%). Of the 254 office visits generated, most were coded as level 3 (15.3%), 4 (44.9%), or 5 (39.0%). Mean office visit length was 37 min +/- 13 min. A total of 445 imaging studies were generated, including pre/postprocedural (260 MRI and 66 CT) and nuclear medicine (119) imaging. The service line generated a total of 5584 wRVU from procedures (4336, 77.6%), office visits (480, 8.6%), and imaging (767, 13.7%). Assuming CMS reimbursement, these wRVUs translated to a total of $388,665 from procedures ($225,463, 58.0%), imaging ($129,473, 33.3%), and office visits ($33,728, 8.7%). Individual patient wRVU 49.8 (25-75% IQR 30.8-72.0) and revenue $3457 ($2381-$4924) varied considerably.
Conclusion(s): In an academic interventional oncology service line, wRVU and revenue are generated primarily by procedural work. However, non-procedural work contributes a substantial portion (~40%) of the revenue.
ISSN: 1535-7732
CID: 4325632

Building a prostate artery embolization service line: understanding the revenue [Meeting Abstract]

Patel, B; Blumberg, G; Ruohoniemi, D; Sista, A; Taslakian, B; Horn, C
Purpose: We sought to quantify the total and relative contributions of evaluation and management (E&M), diagnostic imaging, and procedural services to total revenue and work relative value units (wRVU) within an academic interventional prostate artery embolization service line. Additionally, we evaluated the fluctuations in revenue dependent on hospital compared to office-based lab (OBL) procedural setting. Materials: We performed a retrospective review of all prostate artery embolization patients at a single institution with an index procedure between May 2018 and August 2019. Patient charts were reviewed to capture pre- and postprocedural revenue. Patient demographics and current procedural terminology (CPT) codes associated with each IR encounter were collected. The wRVU and total revenue were estimated using the national payment reported in the 2019 Center for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) Physician Fee Schedule database.
Result(s): A total of 18 patients (all male, mean age 73.7 years) underwent a total of 20 prostate artery embolization, most often for treatment of lower urinary tract symptoms related to benign prostatic hypertrophy (94.4%). Of the 27 office visits generated, most were level 3 (10, 37.0%), 4 (12, 44.4%), or 5 (5, 18.5%). Mean office visit length was 36.1 min +/- 14.6 min. A total of 16 imaging studies were generated. The service line generated a total of 611.48 wRVU from procedures (529.49, 86.6%), office visits (51.71, 8.5%), and imaging (30.28, 5.0%). The total corresponding revenue was $116,622.53, of which $110,201.44 (94.5%) was from procedures, $2870.51 (2.5%) was from imaging, and $3550.57 (3.0%) was from office visits. Of the 20 procedures, 7 were performed in an OBL (35.0%) and 13 were performed in the hospital (65.0%). OBL procedures generated $93,013.31 (84.4%), while hospital procedures generated $17,188.13 (15.6%).
Conclusion(s): In an academic interventional prostate artery embolization service line, wRVU and revenue are driven primarily by procedural work. 13% of the RVUs and 6% of the revenue came from non-procedural work. Procedural revenue was higher in the OBL setting when compared to hospital procedures.
ISSN: 1535-7732
CID: 4325642

Safety of Combined Yttrium-90 Radioembolization and Immune Checkpoint Inhibitor Immunotherapy for Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Zhan, Chenyang; Ruohoniemi, David; Shanbhogue, Krishna P; Wei, Jason; Welling, Theodore H; Gu, Ping; Park, James S; Dagher, Nabil N; Taslakian, Bedros; Hickey, Ryan M
PURPOSE/OBJECTIVE:To investigate the safety of yttrium-90 radioembolization in combination with checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy for the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). MATERIALS AND METHODS/METHODS:This single-center retrospective study included 26 consecutive patients with HCC who received checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy within 90 days of radioembolization from April 2015 to May 2018. Patients had preserved liver function (Child-Pugh scores A-B7) and either advanced HCC due to macrovascular invasion or limited extrahepatic disease (21 patients) or aggressive intermediate stage HCC that resulted in earlier incorporation of systemic immunotherapy (5 patients). Clinical documentation, laboratory results, and imaging results at 1- and 3-month follow-up intervals were reviewed to assess treatment-related adverse events and treatment responses. RESULTS:The median follow-up period after radioembolization was 7.8 months (95% confidence interval [CI], 5.6-11.8). There were no early (30-day) mortality or grades 3/4 hepatobiliary or immunotherapy-related toxicities. Delayed grades 3/4 hepatobiliary toxicities (1-3 months) occurred in 2 patients in the setting of HCC disease progression. One patient developed pneumonitis. The median overall survival from first immunotherapy was 17.2 months (95% CI, 10.9-23.4). The median overall survival from first radioembolization was 16.5 months (95% CI, 6.6-26.4). From first radioembolization, time to tumor progression was 5.7 months (95% CI, 4.2-7.2), and progression-free survival was 5.7 months (95% CI, 4.3-7.1). CONCLUSIONS:Radioembolization combined with checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy in cases of HCC appears to be safe and causes limited treatment-related toxicity. Future prospective studies are needed to identify the optimal combination treatment protocols and evaluate the efficacy of combination therapy.
PMID: 31422022
ISSN: 1535-7732
CID: 4046512

A Descriptive Revenue Analysis of a Wound-Center IR Collaboration to Treat Lower Extremity Venous Ulcers

Ruohoniemi, David M; Ross, Frank L; Chiu, Ernest S; Taslakian, Bedros; Horn, Jeremy C; Aaltonen, Eric A; Kulkarni, Kopal; Browning, Alexa; Patel, Amish; Sista, Akhilesh K
PURPOSE/OBJECTIVE:To describe the revenue from a collaboration between a dedicated wound care center and an interventional radiology (IR) practice for venous leg ulcer (VLU) management at a tertiary care center. MATERIALS AND METHODS/METHODS:This retrospective study included 36 patients with VLU referred from a wound care center to an IR division during the 10-month active study period (April 2017 to January 2018) with a 6-month surveillance period (January 2018 to June 2018). A total of 15 patients underwent endovascular therapy (intervention group), whereas 21 patients did not (nonintervention group). Work relative value units (wRVUs) and dollar revenue were calculated using the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Physician Fee Schedule. RESULTS:Three sources of revenue were identified: evaluation and management (E&M), diagnostic imaging, and procedures. The pathway generated 518.15 wRVUs, translating to $37,522. Procedures contributed the most revenue (342.27 wRVUs, $18,042), followed by E&M (124.23 wRVUs, $8,881), and diagnostic imaging (51.65 wRVUs, $10,599). Intervention patients accounted for 86.7% of wRVUs (449.48) and 80.0% of the revenue ($30,010). An average of 33 minutes (38.3 hours total) and 2.06 hours (36.8 hours total) were spent on E&M visits and procedures, respectively. CONCLUSIONS:In this collaboration between the wound center and IR undertaken to treat VLU, IR and E&M visits generated revenue and enabled procedural and downstream imaging revenue.
PMID: 31623925
ISSN: 1535-7732
CID: 4140652

Interventional Radiology Suite: A Primer for Trainees

Taslakian, Bedros; Ingber, Ross; Aaltonen, Eric; Horn, Jeremy; Hickey, Ryan
Familiarity with different instruments and understanding the basics of image guidance techniques are essential for interventional radiology trainees. However, there are no structured references in the literature, and trainees are left to "pick it up as they go". Puncture needles, guidewires, sheath systems, and catheters represent some of the most commonly used daily instruments by interventional radiologists. There is a large variety of instruments, and understanding the properties of each tool will allow trainees to better assess which type is needed for each specific procedure. Along with understanding the tools required to perform various interventional radiology procedures, it is important for trainees to learn how to organize the room, procedural table, and various equipment that is used during the procedure. Minimizing clutter and improving organization leads to improved efficiency and decreased errors. In addition, having a fundamental knowledge of fluoroscopy, the most commonly used imaging modality, is an integral part of beginning training in interventional radiology.
PMID: 31480308
ISSN: 2077-0383
CID: 4067162

Transthoracic Needle Biopsy of Pulmonary Nodules: Meteorological Conditions and the Risk of Pneumothorax and Chest Tube Placement

Taslakian, Bedros; Koneru, Varshaa; Babb, James S; Sridhar, Divya
The purpose of this paper is to evaluate whether meteorological variables influence rates of pneumothorax and chest tube placement after percutaneous transthoracic needle biopsy (PTNB) of pulmonary nodules. A retrospective review of 338 consecutive PTNBs of pulmonary nodules at a single institution was performed. All procedures implemented a coaxial approach, using a 19-gauge outer guide needle for access and a 20-gauge core biopsy gun with or without a small-gauge aspiration needle for tissue sampling. Correlation between age, sex, smoking history, lesion size, meteorological variables, and frequency of complications were evaluated. Fisher exact, trend and t tests were used to evaluate the relationship between each factor and rates of pneumothorax and chest tube placement. A p value of less than 0.05 was considered to indicate a statistically significant difference. Pneumothorax occurred in 115 of 338 patients (34%). Chest tube placement was required in 30 patients (8.9%). No significant relationship was found between pneumothorax rate and age (p = 0.172), sex (p = 0.909), smoking history (p = 0.819), or lesion location (p = 0.765). The presence or absence of special weather conditions did not correlate with the rate of pneumothorax (p = 0.241) or chest tube placement (p = 0.213). The mean atmospheric temperature (p = 0.619) and degree of humidity (p = 0.858) also did not correlate with differences in the rate of pneumothorax. Finally, mean atmospheric pressure on the day of the procedure demonstrated no correlation with the rate of pneumothorax (p = 0.277) or chest tube placement (p = 0.767). In conclusion, no correlation is demonstrated between the occurrence of pneumothorax after PTNB of pulmonary nodules and the studied meteorological variables.
PMID: 31121869
ISSN: 2077-0383
CID: 3920922

PHACES syndrome with ectopia cordis and hemihypertrophy [Case Report]

Chokr, Jad; Taslakian, Bedros; Maroun, Gilbert; Choudhary, Gagandeep
PHACES is the acronym describing the phenotypic association of posterior fossa anomalies, facial hemangioma, cardiac and eye anomalies, and sternal defects. To date, more than 300 cases of PHACE(S) have been reported. We present the case of a newborn girl who was born with a variant of the PHACES syndrome. Although the sternal cleft and the small facial hemangioma were evident clinically at birth, magnetic resonance imaging of the brain provided additional information to establish the diagnosis. In addition, the patient manifested later with hemihypertrophy, an association that has not been described previously.
PMID: 31191138
ISSN: 0899-8280
CID: 3955542

03:00 PM Abstract No. 325 Extra-hepatic response of primary and metastatic hepatic malignancy to Y90 radioembolization in the setting of immunotherapy [Meeting Abstract]

Zhan, C; Ruohoniemi, D; Martirosyan, K; Hickey, R; Taslakian, B; Kulkarni, K
Purpose: The abscopal effect refers to the immune mediated regression of distant tumor after localized therapy and is typically enhanced by administration of immunotherapy agents such as check-point inhibitors. There are emerging case reports of the abscopal effect after Y90 radioembolization to hepatic malignancy, but systematic investigations are lacking. Here, we investigated the response of extra-hepatic tumors in patients who received both hepatic Y90 radioembolization and systemic immunotherapy. Materials: This single-center retrospective study includes patients with concomitant intra-and extra-hepatic tumor burden who received both Y90 radioembolization and immunotherapy within a 6 month time period between 6/2015-3/2018. The overall survival was evaluated by Kaplan-Meier analysis. The treatment responses of extra-hepatic malignancy at 1 month, 3 months and 6 months intervals were evaluated according to RECIST 1.1 criteria. Result(s): Of 136 total Y90 patients, 26 patients were eligible for analysis. 11 patients (7 HCC, 1 cholangiocarcinoma, and 3 metastatic liver cancer) had Y90 prior to initiation of immunotherapy and 15 patients (7 HCC, 8 metastatic liver cancer) had Y90 after immunotherapy. Objective response at 6-month follow up includes 1 partial response (3.8%), 8 stable disease (30.8%), and 16 progressive disease (61.5%). The median survival time for patients with metastatic hepatic malignancy cannot be determined (2/11 died), and the median survival time for patients with primary liver cancer is 27 months (9/15 died). Conclusion(s): In this systematic, large institutional review, no patients displayed complete regression in distant sites after receiving Y90 and immunotherapy, suggesting that the type of clear abscopal regression reported anecdotally is uncommon. Interestingly, multiple patients demonstrated unexpectedly long-term stable metastatic disease, which could be related to the abscopal effect and motivates subsequent dedicated studies of the immune environment of stable distant tumors.
ISSN: 1535-7732
CID: 3703312

03:54 PM Abstract No. 437 Safety and toxicity of concurrent Y90 radioembolization and checkpoint-inhibitor immunotherapy [Meeting Abstract]

Zhan, C; Ruohoniemi, D; Kulkarni, K; Martirosyan, K; Welling, T; Gu, P; Taslakian, B; Hickey, R
Purpose: As Y90 radioembolization has been shown to activate an immune response, synergistic effects with check-point inhibitor immunotherapy have been proposed. However, the safety of concurrent Y90 and immunotherapy has not been reported. This study retrospectively evaluated the safety of Y90 with concurrent immunotherapy in patients with primary or metastatic liver cancer. Materials: The retrospective study was conducted with IRB approval. Patients who received Y90 treatment within 30 days of immunotherapy were considered to have concurrent therapy. Baseline laboratory values obtained within one month prior to Y90 and at 1 and 3 months after Y90 were evaluated. Hepatobiliary and immunotherapy-related adverse events were characterized according to NCI CTCAE v5.0. Patient survival was estimated using Kaplan-Meier analysis.
Result(s): Between June 2015 and March 2018, 18 patients received concurrent therapy. 14 patients had hepatocellular carcinoma (3 BCLC B, and 11 BCLC C), and 4 had metastatic disease to the liver (3 melanoma, 1 gastric cancer). The median interval between Y90 and immunotherapy was 7 days. Grade >=3 hepatobiliary toxicity occurred in 1 patient at 1 month (6%) and in 3 patients at 3 months (17%) after Y90. Grade >=3 toxicities occurred only in patients with advanced HCC (BCLC C). No grade >=3 immune-associated toxicities occurred at 1 or 3 months in any patients. Median overall survival from first Y90 was 27.4 months for patients with HCC and 13.7 months for patients with metastatic disease to the liver.
Conclusion(s): Concurrent Y90 radioembolization and checkpoint-inhibitor immunotherapy appears to be safe with a low incidence of toxicity. Toxicities were limited to patients with advanced HCC and may be confounded by disease progression.
ISSN: 1535-7732
CID: 4024372