A health economic analysis of combination therapy with infliximab plus elemental diet for moderately to severely active Crohn’s disease


Although infliximab (IFX) is effective for inducing and maintaining remission in patients with Crohn’s disease (CD), it is much more expensive than other treatments. The aim of this study is to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of several therapies, including IFX, for moderately to severely active CD. A Markov cohort model was constructed to simulate treatment effectiveness and costs. Transition probabilities, utilities, direct medical costs, and productivity costs were estimated using the results of published research. The primary effectiveness measurement was quality-adjusted life years (QALYs), as estimated by the 15D instrument. Expected effectiveness and total costs were calculated for a 10-year period using a yearly discount rate of 3% for QALYs and costs. Multiple one-way sensitivity analyses were performed by varying parameters that were likely to change QALYs and costs. As compared with nonbiologic therapy, therapy with IFX alone resulted in more QALYs and lower costs for the 10-year period. Combination therapy with IFX and elemental diet yielded an additional 0.252 QALYs at an additional cost of $18,522 as compared with nonbiologic therapy over 10 years. The resulting incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) of combination therapy vs nonbiologic therapy was $73,500/QALY. Patient body weight was the most important factor for cost-effectiveness. In conclusion it

was revealed that combination therapy with IFX plus elemental diet appears not to be a cost-effective treatment for moderately to severely active CD.

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Saito, S. , Shimizu, U. , Nan, Z. , Yokoyama, J. , Watanabe, M. , Terajima, K. and Akazawa, K. (2014) A health economic analysis of combination therapy with infliximab plus elemental diet for moderately to severely active Crohn’s disease. Health, 6, 107-114. doi: 10.4236/health.2014.61017.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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