A cost-effectiveness analysis of using azacitidine vs. decitabine in treating patients with myelodysplastic syndromes.
ABSTRACT Azacitidine and decitabine are used to treat patients with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) in the United States (US). This study sought to assess their relative cost-effectiveness.
The authors developed a cost-effectiveness Markov model (1-month cycles) tracking hypothetical cohorts of MDS patients treated with azacitidine or decitabine over 2 years. The model used a US payer perspective and 2009 costs. Health states modeled included MDS with Transfusion Dependence, MDS with Transfusion Independence, Progression to Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML), and Death. Incremental cost-effectiveness outcomes included cost per quality-adjusted life year (QALY), cost per life year (LY), cost per patient-month of transfusion independence, and cost per case of AML progression avoided. One-way sensitivity analyses were performed on key model parameters.
Compared to decitabine, azacitidine was associated with better survival (1.512 LYs vs 1.292), more QALYs gained (1.041 vs 0.870), more patient-months with transfusion independence (8.328 vs 6.224), and a greater proportion of patients avoiding progression to AML (50.9% vs 28.5%). Total per-patient costs over 2 years for azacitidine were lower than for decitabine ($150,322 vs $166, 212).
To inform and update the model over time, it will be important that randomized or observational clinical studies be conducted to directly compare azacitidine and decitabine, provide new information on how these medicines are used, and on their relative clinical effectiveness.
Results demonstrate that azacitidine provides greater clinical benefit and costs less than decitabine across all key outcomes. These results accentuate the positive role of azacitidine in providing cost-effective care for MDS.
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ABSTRACT: Fludarabine in addition to cytosine-arabinoside (ARA-C) increases the accumulation of ARA-C-5'-triphosphate (ARA-CTP), which is responsible for the cytotoxic effect in leukemic blasts. In a randomized phase 3 trial, patients with high-risk myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) (n = 91) or elderly patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) (n = 43) were randomized to receive 2 induction courses consisting of ARA-C (2 g/m2 days 1 through 5) and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) (filgrastim, 5 microg/kg) during and after chemotherapy with or without fludarabine (25 mg/m2, days 1 through 5) (FLAG versus AG). Consolidation consisted of daunorubicin (45 mg/m2, days 1 through 3) and ARA-C (200 mg/m2, days 1 through 7). Complete remission (CR) rate following AG was 65% versus 71% with FLAG (P =.49). Overall survival (OS) at 24 months was 24% for AG treatment and 39% for FLAG (P =.32). Event-free survival (EFS) at 2 years was 10% and 19% (P =.31) for the AG and FLAG treatments, respectively. Platelet and granulocyte recovery times after the second cycle were prolonged in the FLAG treatment group. Grades 3 to 4 neurotoxicities were more often reported in the FLAG arm (14% versus 3%, P =.03), whereas no significant differences in other toxicities were observed. In a cohort of patients, the in vivo accumulation of ARA-CTP in leukemic cells was determined. Although ARA-CTP accumulation in leukemic cells after FLAG was enhanced, clinical outcome in terms of CR rate, OS, EFS, and disease-free survival (DFS) was not significantly improved by combining fludarabine with ARA-C.Blood 05/2004; 103(8):2908-13. · 9.06 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Despite multiple disparate prognostic risk analysis systems for evaluating clinical outcome for patients with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), imprecision persists with such analyses. To attempt to improve on these systems, an International MDS Risk Analysis Workshop combined cytogenetic, morphological, and clinical data from seven large previously reported risk-based studies that had generated prognostic systems. A global analysis was performed on these patients, and critical prognostic variables were re-evaluated to generate a consensus prognostic system, particularly using a more refined bone marrow (BM) cytogenetic classification. Univariate analysis indicated that the major variables having an impact on disease outcome for evolution to acute myeloid leukemia were cytogenetic abnormalities, percentage of BM myeloblasts, and number of cytopenias; for survival, in addition to the above, variables also included age and gender. Cytogenetic subgroups of outcome were as follows: "good" outcomes were normal, -Y alone, del(5q) alone, del(20q) alone; "poor" outcomes were complex (ie, > or = 3 abnormalities) or chromosome 7 anomalies; and "intermediate" outcomes were other abnormalities. Multivariate analysis combined these cytogenetic subgroups with percentage of BM blasts and number of cytopenias to generate a prognostic model. Weighting these variables by their statistical power separated patients into distinctive subgroups of risk for 25% of patients to undergo evolution to acute myeloid leukemia, with: low (31% of patients), 9.4 years; intermediate-1 (INT-1; 39%), 3.3 years; INT-2 (22%), 1.1 years; and high (8%), 0.2 year. These features also separated patients into similar distinctive risk groups for median survival: low, 5.7 years; INT-1, 3.5 years; INT-2, 1.2 years; and high, 0.4 year. Stratification for age further improved analysis of survival. Compared with prior risk-based classifications, this International Prognostic Scoring System provides an improved method for evaluating prognosis in MDS. This classification system should prove useful for more precise design and analysis of therapeutic trials in this disease.Blood 04/1997; 89(6):2079-88. · 9.06 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Despite the clinical importance of health-related quality of life (QOL) in patients suffering from myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), few data exist on the prevalence of key MDS-associated symptoms, or the correlation of those symptoms with specific disease features such as hemoglobin level. In order to better understand the burden of disease-associated symptoms in patients with MDS, we designed a 120-question Internet-based survey of QOL appropriate for patients with MDS, incorporating validated QOL measurement instruments and questions about specific therapies. The 359 survey respondents were typical of MDS patients in terms of demographics, blood counts, and disease subtype. Patients reported high levels of excessive fatigue and poor scores on QOL assessments such as the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Anemia (FACT-An) and the Brief Fatigue Inventory (BFI). Patients' debilitating fatigue correlated poorly with hemoglobin level, and fatigue was associated with significant impairment of both health-related QOL and ability to work or participate in desired activities. Within the limitations of self-reported data, these results provide a benchmark for future interventions to improve QOL in patients with MDS.Leukemia Research 06/2008; 32(5):691-8. · 2.76 Impact Factor