Cost-utility analysis of proton pump inhibitors and other gastro-protective agents for prevention of gastrointestinal complications in elderly patients taking nonselective nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents
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BACKGROUND: The use of proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) among elderly patients using nonselective nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (nsNSAIDs) has increased; the price of PPIs is higher than that of majority of alternative treatment strategies. AIM: To evaluate the cost-effectiveness of nsNSAIDS + PPIs relative to alternative gastroprotective regimens in the prevention of GI complications among elderly patients (aged > or = 65 years). METHODS: An incremental cost-utility analysis, comparing PPIs with alternative gastroprotective regimens was conducted using a decision analytical model. Clinical outcomes, costs and utilities were derived from recently published studies. Probabilistic and deterministic sensitivity analyses were performed to test the robustness of the results to variation in model inputs and assumptions. RESULTS: The incremental cost-utility ratio (ICUR) of PPIs, relative to nsNSAID alone, was $206,315 per QALY gained or were more costly and less effective. Other co-prescribed treatment options had higher costs per QALY gained. In patients with a history of a complicated or uncomplicated ulcer, PPIs had ICURs of $24,277 and $40,876, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Use of PPIs in all elderly patients taking nsNSAIDs is unlikely to represent an efficient use of finite healthcare resources. Co-prescribing PPIs, however, to elderly patients taking nsNSAIDs who have a history of complicated or uncomplicated ulcers appears to be economically attractive.
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