Reviewing the quality, health benefit and value for money of chemotherapy and targeted therapy for metastatic breast cancer

Xavier Ghislain Leon Victor Pouwels, Bram Ramaekers, Manuela A. Joore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
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Purpose"To provide an overview of model characteristics and outcomes of model-based economic evaluations concerning chemotherapy and targeted therapy (TT) for metastatic breast cancer (MBC); to assess the quality of the studies; to analyse the association between model characteristics and study quality and outcomes.

Methods: PubMED and NHS EED were systematically searched. Inclusion criteria were as follows: English or Dutch language, model-based economic evaluation, chemotherapy or TT as intervention, population diagnosed with MBC, published between 2000 and 2014, reporting life years (LY) or quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) and an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio. General characteristics, model characteristics and outcomes of the studies were extracted. Quality of the studies was assessed through a checklist.

Results: 24 studies were included, considering 50 comparisons (20 concerning chemotherapy and 30 TT). Seven comparisons were represented in multiple studies. A health state-transition model including the following health states: stable/progression-free disease, progression and death was used in 18 studies. Studies fulfilled on average 14 out of the 26 items of the quality checklist, mostly due to a lack of transparency in reporting. Thirty-one per cent of the incremental net monetary benefit was positive. TT led to higher iQALY gained, and industry-sponsored studies reported more favourable cost-effectiveness outcomes.

Conclusions: The development of a disease-specific reference model would improve the transparency and quality of model-based cost-effectiveness assessments for MBC treatments. Incremental health benefits increased over time, but were outweighed by the increased treatment costs. Consequently, increased health benefits led to lower value for money.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)485-498
JournalBreast cancer research and treatment
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2017
Externally publishedYes


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