Variation of medicare payments for total knee arthroplasty

Yue Li, Xin Lu, Brian R. Wolf, John J. Callaghan, Peter Cram

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


We analyzed the 2009 Medicare inpatient claims data and other databases to estimate Medicare payments for primary or revision total knee arthroplasty (TKA). The average Medicare hospital payment per procedure was $13,464 for primary TKA (n. = 227,587) and $17,331 for revision TKA (n. = 18,677). For both primary and revision TKAs Medicare payments varied substantially across patients, hospitals and healthcare markets. Less than one percent of primary TKA cases but seven percent of revision TKA cases triggered Medicare "outlier" payments, which were $10,000 or higher per case beyond regular diagnosis-related-group payments. Urban and major teaching hospitals were more likely to treat these unusually expensive cases. Hospitals in the Northeast and West regions tended to receive higher Medicare payments than hospitals in the Midwest.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1513-1520
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Arthroplasty
Issue number9
StatePublished - Oct 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Medicare
  • Outlier payment
  • Payment
  • Revision TKA
  • Total knee arthroplasty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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