POPULATION-BASED AND OPPORTUNISTIC SCREENING AND ERADICATION OF HELICOBACTER PYLORI Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Objectives: To examine whether screening and eradication of Helicobacter pylori by population-based invitation or opportunistic screening by general practitioners reduces costs to the National Health Service (NHS) of treating dyspepsia.Methods: A limited dependent, variable, two-step regression analysis was used to explore the baseline annual health care costs of dyspepsia for men and women aged 40–49 enrolled in the Leeds H. pylori screening and eradication trial.Results: Epidemiological and clinical questionnaires, general practitioner notes, and 13C urea breath test results were available for 4,754 individuals. After adjusting for covariates, H. pylori was associated with a 6.7% increased probability of incurring gastrointestinal-related NHS costs (p < .0001) in the population aged 40-49. Additionally, H pylori increased average costs in those who seek medical care (p = .001). In consequence, H. pylori is associated with an average increased cost to the NHS of £0.30 per year (95% CI: £0.17 to £0.45) per adult aged 40–49. In those consulting for dyspepsia, the increased cost to the NHS was £1.04 per year (95% CI: £0.42 to £1.75) per patient. The cost of population screening and treatment would not be recovered in reduced dyspepsia costs in the lifetime of those screened. Assuming laboratory-based serology screening is used opportunistically in patients presenting with dyspepsia, it is estimated that costs would be recouped in 18 years.Conclusions: This observational data set suggests that the costs of screening and treatment in all individuals aged 40–49 or in those presenting in primary care with dyspeptic symptoms are unlikely to be attractive on the basis of cost savings alone.

authors

  • Mason, James M
  • Moayyedi, Paul
  • Young, Philip J
  • Duffett, Sara
  • Crocombe, Will
  • Drummond, Michael F
  • Axon, Anthony TR

publication date

  • March 1999

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