Cost-effectiveness of pegfilgrastim versus 6-day filgrastim primary prophylaxis in patients with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma receiving CHOP-21 in United States

Gary Lyman, Anjana Lalla, Richard Barron, Robert W Dubois
Current Medical Research and Opinion 2009, 25 (2): 401-11

OBJECTIVES: Prophylaxis with granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF) reduces the risk of febrile neutropenia (FN) in patients receiving myelosuppressive chemotherapy. Randomized clinical trials have shown that pegfilgrastim, a 2nd-generation G-CSF, is at least as effective as the 1st-generation G-CSF filgrastim. In the meta-analysis of trials pegfilgrastim performed better than filgrastim with respect to FN risk. The incremental cost-effectiveness of primary prophylaxis (starting in cycle 1 and continuing in subsequent cycles of chemotherapy) with pegfilgrastim versus filgrastim used for 6 days (as is often used in clinical practice) was estimated in patients with aggressive non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) receiving myelosuppressive chemotherapy in the United States.

METHODS: A decision-analytic model was constructed from a health insurer's perspective with a life-time study horizon. The model considered direct medical costs and outcomes related to reduced FN and potential survival benefits due to reduced FN-related mortality. Inputs for the model were obtained from the medical literature. Sensitivity analyses were conducted across plausible ranges in parameter values.

RESULTS: The incremental cost-effectiveness (ICER) of pegfilgrastim versus 6-day filgrastim primary prophylaxis was $2167/FN episode avoided. Adding survival benefit from avoiding FN mortality yielded an ICER of $5532/LY gained or $6190/QALY gained. When the potential benefit of optimized chemotherapy was included, the ICER was $1494/LY gained or $1677/QALY gained. The most influential factors included cost of pegfilgrastim, relative risk of FN between pegfilgrastim and filgrastim, FN case-fatality rate, cost of filgrastim and baseline FN risk.

CONCLUSIONS: Pegfilgrastim is cost-effective in primary prophylaxis of FN compared to 6 days per cycle of filgrastim, in patients with NHL receiving myelosuppressive chemotherapy (e.g., cyclophosphamide + doxorubicin + vincristine + prednisolone [CHOP-21]) chemotherapy. Study limitations included lack of direct evidence linking G-CSF use with a reduction in FN-related mortality and limited data that show a relationship between relative dose intensity (RDI) and cancer-specific patient survival.

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