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The cost-effectiveness of oral direct factor Xa inhibitors compared with low-molecular-weight heparin for the prevention of venous thromboembolism prophylaxis in total hip or knee replacement surgery.

Pharmacotherapy 2013 December
INTRODUCTION: Major orthopedic surgery is associated with a high risk of venous thromboembolism (VTE). Anticoagulants are recommended to prevent VTE, and recently an oral direct factor Xa inhibitor (FXaI) was approved for this indication. We compared the cost-effectiveness of FXaIs with low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH) in patients undergoing total hip replacement (THR) or total knee replacement (TKR) surgery.

DESIGN: A decision-tree model was developed to compare the cost-effectiveness of oral direct FXaIs (rivaroxaban, apixaban, and edoxaban) to subcutaneous LMWHs (enoxaparin and dalteparin), with separate models for THR and TKR. The analysis was conducted over a 180-day postoperative time horizon from the U.S. Medicare perspective. The model was developed using TreeAge Pro 2011 (TreeAge Software Inc., Williamstown, MA, USA).

METHODS: Efficacy and safety data (probabilities of distal and proximal deep vein thrombosis, symptomatic pulmonary embolism, and major bleeding) were derived from a systematic review and meta-analysis of phase II and III clinical trials. Costs and quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) are reported. One-way and probabilistic sensitivity analyses were performed to evaluate parameter uncertainty.

RESULTS: In the THR model, the average costs per patient for FXaIs and LMWHs were $18,762 and $18,897, respectively, and the QALYs were 0.938 and 0.932. In the TKR model, the average cost per patient for FXaIs and LMWHs were $18,804 and $18,991, respectively, and the QALYs were 0.935 and 0.931. In both models, FXaIs dominated LMWH (less costly and more efficacious). Neither model was sensitive to changes in any of the variables in the one-way sensitivity analyses. Probabilistic sensitivity analysis indicated that FXaIs were cost-effective in more than 99% of iterations in the THR population and in 98% of iterations in the TKR population assuming a willingness-to-pay threshold of $50,000/QALY.

CONCLUSION: Oral direct FXaIs may be an economically dominant strategy compared with LMWHs for VTE prophylaxis in patients undergoing either THR or TKR surgery.

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