Ten‐Year Survival and Cost Following Breast Cancer Recurrence: Estimates from SEER‐Medicare Data

Department of Health Policy and Management, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA
Value in Health (Impact Factor: 2.89). 02/2008; 11(2):213 - 220. DOI: 10.1111/j.1524-4733.2007.00226.x

ABSTRACT Objective: A variety of pharmacologic therapies are available or in development for the prevention of breast cancer recurrence. Assessing the value of these treatments is compromised by a paucity of data on the impact of recurrence on economic costs and survival. The purpose of this study was to shed light on these issues.Methods: We conducted a retrospective analysis of linked SEER-Medicare data. All patients in the National Cancer Institute's Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) registry who were diagnosed with nonmetastatic breast cancer during 1991–1993 were identified, and their subsequent Medicare claims were scanned for evidence of further breast cancer events (local or distant recurrence, contralateral breast cancer). Medicare claims were then scanned from the time of the event through 2002 to assess patterns of survival and costs.Results: We identified 10,798 patients in SEER who were diagnosed with nonmetastatic breast cancer during 1991–1993, including 1833 who subsequently had another breast cancer event (local recurrence, 958; distant recurrence, 622; contralateral breast cancer, 253). Median survival was 37 months and 8 months among patients with local and distant recurrence, respectively; 53% of patients with contralateral breast cancer remained alive after all the data were censored at 97 months. Expected 10-year costs (2004 US$, discounted 3%) attributable to distant recurrence, local recurrence, and contralateral breast cancer were $11,450 (SE 2056), $19,596 (SE 1754), and $19,183 (SE 4131), respectively.Conclusion: Breast cancer recurrence and contralateral breast cancer lead to substantial increases in costs, amounting to approximately $11,000–19,000 over 10 years depending on type. The impact of these events on survival also varies considerably by type.

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    ABSTRACT: Background. Trastuzumab improves survival in HER2-positive women with metastatic breast cancer (MBC). The consequences of longer survival include a higher likelihood of additional metastases, including those in the central nervous system (CNS). The effect of CNS metastases on both trastuzumab discontinuation and survival in older patients has not been described. Patients and Methods. We used the Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) Medicare data to identify a cohort of 562 women age 66 or older with MBC who were diagnosed between January 1, 2000 and December 31, 2005, free of CNS metastases, and initiated trastuzumab after MBC diagnosis. Time to discontinuation and time to death were analyzed using proportional hazards models. Results. Newly diagnosed CNS metastases were associated with both higher risk of trastuzumab discontinuation (relative hazard [RH] = 1.78, 95% CI 1.11-2.87) and higher risk of death (RH = 2.49, 95% CI 1.84-3.37). The incidence rate of new CNS metastases was comparable among various sites of metastasis (10.7 to 14.7 per 1,000 patient-months), except for bone which was higher (24.1 per 1,000). Conclusion. The diagnosis of CNS metastases was associated with an increase in both the likelihood of discontinuing trastuzumab therapy as well as the risk of death.
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    ABSTRACT: Accelerated partial-breast irradiation (PBI) is a new treatment paradigm for patients with early-stage breast cancer. Although PBI may lead to greater local recurrence rates, it may be cost-effective because of better tolerability and lower cost. We aim to determine the incremental cost-effectiveness of PBI compared with whole-breast radiation therapy (WBRT) for estrogen receptor-positive postmenopausal women treated for early-stage breast cancer. We developed a Markov model to describe health states in the 15 years after radiotherapy for early-stage breast cancer. External beam (EB) and MammoSite (MS) PBI were considered and assumed to be equally effective, but carried different costs. Patients received tamoxifen, but not chemotherapy. Utilities, recurrence risks, and costs were adapted from the literature; the baseline utility for no disease after radiotherapy was set at 0.92. Probabilistic sensitivity analyses were performed to model uncertainty in the PBI hazard ratio, recurrence pattern, and patient utilities. Costs (in 2004 US dollars) and quality-adjusted life-years were discounted at 3%/y. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio for WBRT compared with EB-PBI was $630,000/quality-adjusted life-year; WBRT strongly dominated MS-PBI. One-way sensitivity analysis found that results were sensitive to PBI hazard ratio, recurrence pattern, baseline recurrence risk, and no evidence of disease PBI utility values. Probabilistic sensitivity showed that EB-PBI was the most cost-effective technique over a wide range of assumptions and societal willingness-to-pay values. EB-PBI was the most cost-effective strategy for postmenopausal women with early-stage breast cancer. Unless the quality of life after MS-PBI proves to be superior, it is unlikely to be cost-effective.
    International journal of radiation oncology, biology, physics 11/2008; 74(2):440-6. DOI:10.1016/j.ijrobp.2008.08.015 · 4.18 Impact Factor


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