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ABSTRACT: This study compares the payors' cost of treatment for surgical Stage I endometrial carcinoma with results of published clinical studies to determine which treatment most efficiently uses available resources.
Six options for treatment of surgical Stage I endometrial carcinoma were selected for comparison. The treatment options were observation only, low-dose-rate brachytherapy (LDRB) (nonremote afterloading), LDRB and external beam radiation (EBRT), EBRT only, high-dose-rate brachytherapy (HDRB) only (three applications), and EBRT and HDRB (three applications). The literature was reviewed to obtain disease-free survival (DFS) rates corresponding to the treatment options chosen in surgical Stages IA, IB, and IC. Metaanalysis and sensitivity testing were performed on the collected clinical data. A typical midsized city in Medicare region IV was used as our representative payor cost basis.
Thirteen retrospective articles contained sufficient clinical information for analysis. Comparison of DFS between the observation, LDRB, and EBRT treatment groups was made for Stage IA; LDRB and EBRT for Stage IB; and LDRB, EBRT, LDRB +/- EBRT, LDRB + EBRT, and HDRB + EBRT for Stage IC. Meta-analysis failed to reveal statistically significant DFS between the respective treatment options within Stages IA, IB, or IC. The RVUs for each treatment option were LDRB, 21.7; EBRT, 117.1; EBRT + LDRB, 130.7; HDRB, 155.5; and EBRT + HDRB, 264.4. The DRG payment for LDRB is $2714.92. The calculated payor's cost for each treatment option was: LDRB, $3466.62; EBRT, $4053.03; EBRT + LDRB, $7238.55; HDRB, $5381.19; and EBRT + HDRB, $9153.14.
Our analysis reveals no statistically significant differences in DFS among the treatment options considered within each surgical stage. Observation appears to result in acceptable DFS with minimal cost in Stage IA. Low-dose-rate brachytherapy was the most cost-effective treatment in Stage IB, with no statistically significant difference in DFS between LDRB and EBRT. Although LDRB had inferior DFS compared to other treatment options in surgical Stage IC, this difference failed to reach statistical significance. Our analysis implies, excluding observation, that LDRB may be a more cost-efficient treatment than the other treatment options considered. Further studies stratifying for surgical stage and grade are needed to determine the optimal cost-effective treatment for this common malignancy.
International Journal of Radiation OncologyBiologyPhysics 02/1997; 37(2):367-73. · 4.52 Impact Factor