Angela C Tramontano

Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, United States

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Publications (18)94.87 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Background and Aim Individuals with type 2 diabetes are at heightened risk for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, which gives rise to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and cirrhosis. Yet, current guidelines do not recommend screening for NASH among these high-risk patients. Using a simulation model, we assessed the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of screening diabetic patients for NASH. Methods A Markov model was constructed to compare two management strategies for 50-year-olds with diabetes. In the No Screening strategy, patients do not undergo screening, although NASH may be diagnosed incidentally over their lifetime. In the NASH Screening strategy, all patients receive a one-time screening ultrasound. Individuals with fatty infiltration on ultrasound then have a liver biopsy, and those found to have NASH receive medical therapy, which decreases progression to cirrhosis. Endpoints evaluated included quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) gained, costs, and incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs). Results Screening for NASH decreased the number of individuals who developed cirrhosis by 12.9 % and resulted in an 11.9 % decrease in liver-related deaths. However, screening resulted in 0.02 fewer QALYs, due to the disutility associated with treatment, and was therefore dominated by the No Screening strategy. When the model excluded this quality-of-life decrement, screening became cost-effective, at an ICER of $42,134 per QALY. Conclusions Screening for NASH may improve liver-related outcomes, but is not cost-effective at present, due to side effects of therapy. As better tolerated treatments for NASH become available, even with modest efficacy, screening for NASH will become cost-effective.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2016 · Digestive Diseases and Sciences
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives: Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) has not experienced a meaningful mortality improvement for the past few decades. Successful screening is difficult to accomplish because most PDACs present late in their natural history, and current interventions have not provided significant benefit. Our goal was to identify determinants of survival for early PDAC to help inform future screening strategies. Methods: Early PDACs from the National Cancer Institute's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program database (2000-2010) were analyzed. We stratified by size and included carcinomas in situ (Tis). Overall cancer-specific survival was calculated. A Cox proportional hazards model was developed and the significance of key covariates for survival prediction was evaluated. Results: A Kaplan-Meier plot demonstrated significant differences in survival by size at diagnosis; these survival benefits persisted after adjustment for key covariates in the Cox proportional hazards analysis. In addition, relatively weaker predictors of worse survival included older age, male sex, black race, nodal involvement, tumor location within the head of the pancreas, and no surgery or radiotherapy. Conclusions: For early PDAC, we found tumor size to be the strongest predictor of survival, even after adjustment for other patient characteristics. Our findings suggest that early PDAC detection can have clinical benefit, which has positive implications for future screening strategies.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2015 · Pancreas
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose To determine how physicians' diagnoses, diagnostic uncertainty, and management decisions are affected by the results of computed tomography (CT) in emergency department settings. Materials and Methods This study was approved by the institutional review board and compliant with HIPAA. Data were collected between July 12, 2012, and January 13, 2014. The requirement to obtain patient consent was waived. In this prospective, four-center study, patients presenting to the emergency department who were referred for CT with abdominal pain, chest pain and/or dyspnea, or headache were identified. Physicians were surveyed before and after CT to determine the leading diagnosis, diagnostic confidence (on a scale of 0% to 100%), alternative "rule out" diagnosis, and management decisions. Primary measures were the proportion of patients for whom the leading diagnosis or admission decision changed and median changes in diagnostic confidence. Secondary measures addressed alternative diagnoses and return-to-care visits (eg, to emergency department) at 1-month follow-up. Regression analysis was used to identify associations between primary measures and site and participant characteristics. Results Both surveys were completed for 1280 patients by 245 physicians. The leading diagnosis changed in 235 of 460 patients with abdominal pain (51%), 163 of 387 with chest pain and/or dyspnea (42%), and 103 of 433 with headache (24%). Pre-CT diagnostic confidence was inversely associated with the likelihood of a diagnostic change (P < .0001). Median changes in confidence were substantial (increases of 25%, 20%, and 13%, respectively, for patients with abdominal pain, chest pain and/or dyspnea, and headache; P < .0001); median post-CT confidence was high (95% for all three groups). CT helped confirm or exclude at least 95% of alternative diagnoses. Admission decisions changed in 116 of 457 patients with abdominal pain (25%), 72 of 387 with chest pain and/or dyspnea (19%), and 81 of 426 with headache (19%). During follow-up, 70 of 450 patients with abdominal pain (15%), 53 of 387 with chest pain and/or dyspnea (14%), and 49 of 433 with headache (11%) returned for the same indication. In general, changes in leading diagnosis, diagnostic confidence, and admission decisions were not well explained with site or participant characteristics. Conclusion Physicians' diagnoses and admission decisions changed frequently after CT, and diagnostic uncertainty was alleviated. (©) RSNA, 2015 Online supplemental material is available for this article.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2015 · Radiology
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    ABSTRACT: To study the cost-effectiveness of high-resolution microendoscopy (HRME) in an esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) screening program in China. A decision analytic Markov model of ESCC was developed. Separate model analyses were conducted for cohorts consisting of an average-risk population or a high-risk population in China. Hypothetical 50-year-old individuals were followed until age 80 or death. We compared three different strategies for both cohorts: (1) no screening; (2) standard endoscopic screening with Lugol's iodine staining; and (3) endoscopic screening with Lugol's iodine staining and an HRME. Model parameters were estimated from the literature as well as from GLOBOCAN, the Cancer Incidence and Mortality Worldwide cancer database. Health states in the model included non-neoplasia, mild dysplasia, moderate dysplasia, high-grade dysplasia, intramucosal carcinoma, operable cancer, inoperable cancer, and death. Separate ESCC incidence transition rates were generated for the average-risk and high-risk populations. Costs in Chinese currency were converted to international dollars (I$) and were adjusted to 2012 dollars using the Consumer Price Index. The main outcome measurements for this study were quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) and incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER). For the average-risk population, the HRME screening strategy produced 0.043 more QALYs than the no screening strategy at an additional cost of I$646, resulting in an ICER of I$11808 per QALY gained. Standard endoscopic screening was weakly dominated. Among the high-risk population, when the HRME screening strategy was compared with the standard screening strategy, the ICER was I$8173 per QALY. For both the high-risk and average-risk screening populations, the HRME screening strategy appeared to be the most cost-effective strategy, producing ICERs below the willingness-to-pay threshold, I$23500 per QALY. One-way sensitivity analysis showed that, for the average-risk population, higher specificity of Lugol's iodine (> 40%) and lower specificity of HRME (< 70%) could make Lugol's iodine screening cost-effective. For the high-risk population, the results of the model were not substantially affected by varying the follow-up rate after Lugol's iodine screening, Lugol's iodine test characteristics (sensitivity and specificity), or HRME specificity. The incorporation of HRME into an ESCC screening program could be cost-effective in China. Larger studies of HRME performance are needed to confirm these findings.
    Preview · Article · May 2015
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    ABSTRACT: The EQ-5D and SF-6D are 2 health-related quality-of-life indexes that provide preference-weighted measures for use in cost-effectiveness analyses. The National Cancer Institute's Cancer Care Outcomes Research and Surveillance (CanCORS) Consortium included the EQ-5D and SF-12v2 in their survey of newly diagnosed lung cancer patients. Utilities were calculated from patient-provided scores for each domain of the EQ-5D or the SF-6D. Utilities were calculated for categories of cancer type, stage, and treatment. There were 5015 enrolled lung cancer patients with a baseline survey in CanCORS; 2396 (47.8%) completed the EQ-5D, and 2344 (46.7%) also completed the SF-12v2. The mean (standard deviation) utility from the EQ-5D was 0.78 (0.18), and from the SF-6D (derived from SF-12v2) was 0.68 (0.14). The EQ-5D demonstrated a ceiling effect, with 20% of patients reporting perfect scores, translating to a utility of 1.0. No substantial SF-6D floor effects were noted. Utilities increased with age and decreased with stage and comorbidities. Patient-reported (EQ-5D) visual analog scale scores for health status had a moderate (r = 0.48, p < 0.0001) positive correlation with utilities. A subset (n = 1474) completed follow-up EQ-5D questionnaires 11-13 months after diagnosis. Among these patients, there was a nonsignificant decrease in mean utility for stage IV and an increase in mean utility for stages I, II, and III. This study generated a catalog of community-weighted utilities applicable to societal-perspective cost-effectiveness analyses of lung cancer interventions and compared utilities based on the EQ-5D and SF-6D. Potential users of these scores should be aware of the limitations and think carefully about their use in specific studies. © The Author(s) 2015.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2015 · Medical Decision Making
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    ABSTRACT: Lung cancer screening with annual chest computed tomography (CT) is recommended for current and former smokers with a ≥30-pack-year smoking history. Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are at increased risk of developing lung cancer and may benefit from screening at lower pack-year thresholds. We used a previously validated simulation model to compare the health benefits of lung cancer screening in current and former smokers ages 55-80 with ≥30 pack-years with hypothetical programs using lower pack-year thresholds for individuals with COPD (≥20, ≥10, and ≥1 pack-years). Calibration targets for COPD prevalence and associated lung cancer risk were derived using the Framingham Offspring Study limited data set. We performed sensitivity analyses to evaluate the stability of results across different rates of adherence to screening, increased competing mortality risk from COPD, and increased surgical ineligibility in individuals with COPD. The primary outcome was projected life expectancy. Programs using lower pack-year thresholds for individuals with COPD yielded the highest life expectancy gains for a given number of screens. Highest life expectancy was achieved when lowering the pack-year threshold to ≥1 pack-year for individuals with COPD, which dominated all other screening strategies. These results were stable across different adherence rates to screening and increases in competing mortality risk for COPD and surgical ineligibility. Current and former smokers with COPD may disproportionately benefit from lung cancer screening. A lower pack-year threshold for screening eligibility may benefit this high-risk patient population. Cancer 2015. © 2015 American Cancer Society. © 2014 American Cancer Society.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2015 · Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose: To identify when, from the standpoint of relative risk, magnetic resonance (MR) imaging-based screening may be effective in patients with a known or suspected genetic predisposition to pancreatic cancer. Materials and methods: The authors developed a Markov model of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC). The model was calibrated to National Cancer Institute Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results registry data and informed by the literature. A hypothetical screening strategy was evaluated in which all population individuals underwent one-time MR imaging screening at age 50 years. Screening outcomes for individuals with an average risk for PDAC ("base case") were compared with those for individuals at an increased risk to assess for differential benefits in populations with a known or suspected genetic predisposition. Effects of varying key inputs, including MR imaging performance, surgical mortality, and screening age, were evaluated with a sensitivity analysis. RESULTS In the base case, screening resulted in a small number of cancer deaths averted (39 of 100 000 men, 38 of 100 000 women) and a net decrease in life expectancy (-3 days for men, -4 days for women), which was driven by unnecessary pancreatic surgeries associated with false-positive results. Life expectancy gains were achieved if an individual's risk for PDAC exceeded 2.4 (men) or 2.7 (women) times that of the general population. When relative risk increased further, for example to 30 times that of the general population, averted cancer deaths and life expectancy gains increased substantially (1219 of 100 000 men, life expectancy gain: 65 days; 1204 of 100 000 women, life expectancy gain: 71 days). In addition, results were sensitive to MR imaging specificity and the surgical mortality rate. Conclusion: Although PDAC screening with MR imaging for the entire population is not effective, individuals with even modestly increased risk may benefit.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2014 · Radiology
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    ABSTRACT: The rate and risk factors of recurrent or metachronous adenocarcinoma following endoscopic ablation therapy in patients with Barrett's esophagus (BE) have not been specifically reported. The aim of this study was to determine the incidence and predictors of adenocarcinoma after ablation therapy for BE high-grade dysplasia (HGD) or intramucosal carcinoma (IMC). This is a single center, retrospective review of prospectively collected data on consecutive cases of endoscopic ablation for BE. A total of 223 patients with BE (HGD or IMC) were treated by ablation between 1996 and 2011. Primary outcome measures were recurrence and new development of adenocarcinoma after ablation. Recurrence was defined as the presence of adenocarcinoma following the absence of adenocarcinoma in biopsy samples from two consecutive surveillance endoscopies. Logistic regression analysis was performed to assess predictors of adenocarcinoma after ablation. One hundred and eighty-three patients were included in the final analysis, and 40 patients were excluded: 22 for palliative ablation, eight lost to follow-up, five for residual carcinoma and five for postoperative state. Median follow-up was 39 months. Recurrence or new development of adenocarcinoma was found in 20 patients (11 %) and the median time to recurrence/development of adenocarcinoma was 11.5 months. Independent predictors of recurrent or metachronous adenocarcinoma were hiatal hernia size ≥ 4 cm (odds ratio 3.649, P = 0.0233) and histology (HGD/adenocarcinoma) after first ablation (odds ratio 4.141, P = 0.0065). Adenocarcinoma after endoscopic therapy for HGD or IMC in BE is associated with large hiatal hernia and histology status after initial ablation therapy.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2014 · Digestive Diseases and Sciences
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    Sung Eun Choi · Katherine E. Perzan · Angela C Tramontano · Chung Yin Kong · Chin Hur
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    ABSTRACT: Data suggest that aspirin, statins, or a combination of the two drugs may lower the progression of Barrett's esophagus (BE) to esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC). However, aspirin is associated with potential complications such as gastrointestinal bleeding and hemorrhagic stroke, and statins are associated with myopathy. We developed a simulation disease model to study the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of aspirin and statin chemoprevention against EAC. A decision analytic Markov model was constructed to compare four strategies for BE management; all regimens included standard endoscopic surveillance regimens: 1) endoscopic surveillance alone, 2) aspirin therapy, 3) statin therapy, and 4) combination therapy of aspirin and statin. Endpoints evaluated were life expectancy, quality adjusted life-years (QALY), costs, and incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICER). Sensitivity analysis was performed to determine the impact of model input uncertainty on results. Assuming an annual progression rate of 0.33%/ year from BE to EAC, aspirin therapy was more effective and cost less than (dominated) endoscopic surveillance alone. When combination therapy was compared to aspirin therapy, the ICER was $158,000/QALY, which was above our willingness-to-pay threshold of $100,000/QALY. Statin therapy was dominated by combination therapy. When higher annual cancer progression rates were assumed in the model (0.5%/year), combination therapy was cost-effective compared to aspirin therapy, producing an ICER of $96,000/QALY. In conclusion, aspirin chemoprevention was both more effective and cost less than endoscopic surveillance alone. Combination therapy using both aspirin and statin is expensive but could be cost-effective in patients at higher risk of progression to EAC.
    Preview · Article · Dec 2013 · Cancer Prevention Research
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: A subset of patients with stage IA and IB non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is ineligible for surgical resection and undergoes radiation therapy. Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) and stereotactic body radiotherapy are newer potentially attractive alternative therapies. Materials and methods: We added RFA and stereotactic body radiotherapy treatment modules to a microsimulation model that simulates lung cancer's natural history, detection, and treatment. Natural history parameters were previously estimated via calibration against tumor registry data and cohort studies; the model was validated with screening study and cohort data. RFA model parameters were calibrated against 2-year survival from the Radiofrequency Ablation of Pulmonary Tumor Response Evaluation (RAPTURE) study, and stereotactic body radiotherapy model parameters were calibrated against 3-year survival from a phase 2 prospective trial. We simulated lifetime histories of identical patients with early-stage NSCLC who were ineligible for resection, who were treated with radiation therapy, RFA, or stereotactic body radiotherapy under a range of scenarios. From 5,000,000 simulated individuals, we selected a cohort of patients with stage I medically inoperable cancer for analysis (n = 2056 per treatment scenario). Main outcomes were life expectancy gains. Results: RFA or stereotactic body radiotherapy treatment in patients with peripheral stage IA or IB NSCLC who were nonoperative candidates resulted in life expectancy gains of 1.71 and 1.46 life-years, respectively, compared with universal radiation therapy. A strategy where patients with central tumors underwent stereotactic body radiotherapy and those with peripheral tumors underwent RFA resulted in a gain of 2.02 life-years compared with universal radiation therapy. Findings were robust with respect to changes in model parameters. Conclusion: Microsimulation modeling results suggest that RFA and stereotactic body radiotherapy could provide life expectancy gains to patients with stage IA or IB NSCLC who are ineligible for resection.
    No preview · Article · May 2013 · American Journal of Roentgenology
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    ABSTRACT: The natural history model underlying the MGH Lung Cancer Policy Model (LCPM) does not include the two-stage clonal expansion model employed in other CISNET lung models. We used the LCPM to predict numbers of U.S. lung cancer deaths for ages 30-84 between 1975 and 2000 under four scenarios as part of the comparative modeling analysis described in this issue. The LCPM is a comprehensive microsimulation model of lung cancer development, progression, detection, treatment, and survival. Individual-level patient histories are aggregated to estimate cohort or population-level outcomes. Lung cancer states are defined according to underlying disease variables, test results, and clinical events. By simulating detailed clinical procedures, the LCPM can predict benefits and harms attributable to a variety of patient management practices, including annual screening programs. Under the scenario of observed smoking patterns, predicted numbers of deaths from the calibrated LCPM were within 2% of observed over all years (1975-2000). The LCPM estimated that historical tobacco control policies achieved 28.6% (25.2% in men, 30.5% in women) of the potential reduction in U.S. lung cancer deaths had smoking had been eliminated entirely. The hypothetical adoption in 1975 of annual helical CT screening of all persons aged 55-74 with at least 30 pack-years of cigarette exposure to historical tobacco control would have yielded a proportion realized of 39.0% (42.0% in men, 33.3% in women). The adoption of annual screening would have prevented less than half as many lung cancer deaths as the elimination of cigarette smoking.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2012 · Risk Analysis
  • Suh Eun Bae · Chin Hur · Sung Eun Choi · Angela Tramontano

    No preview · Article · May 2012 · Gastroenterology
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    ABSTRACT: A randomized trial has demonstrated that lung cancer screening reduces mortality. Identifying participant and program characteristics that influence the cost-effectiveness of screening will help translate trial results into benefits at the population level. Six U.S. cohorts (men and women aged 50, 60, or 70 years) were simulated in an existing patient-level lung cancer model. Smoking histories reflected observed U.S. patterns. We simulated lifetime histories of 500,000 identical individuals per cohort in each scenario. Costs per quality-adjusted life-year gained ($/QALY) were estimated for each program: computed tomography screening; stand-alone smoking cessation therapies (4-30% 1-year abstinence); and combined programs. Annual screening of current and former smokers aged 50 to 74 years costs between $126,000 and $169,000/QALY (minimum 20 pack-years of smoking) or $110,000 and $166,000/QALY (40 pack-year minimum), when compared with no screening and assuming background quit rates. Screening was beneficial but had a higher cost per QALY when the model included radiation-induced lung cancers. If screen participation doubled background quit rates, the cost of annual screening (at age 50 years, 20 pack-year minimum) was below $75,000/QALY. If screen participation halved background quit rates, benefits from screening were nearly erased. If screening had no effect on quit rates, annual screening costs more but provided fewer QALYs than annual cessation therapies. Annual combined screening/cessation therapy programs at age 50 years costs $130,500 to $159,700/QALY, when compared with annual stand-alone cessation. The cost-effectiveness of computed tomography screening will likely be strongly linked to achievable smoking cessation rates. Trials and further modeling should explore the consequences of relationships between smoking behaviors and screen participation.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2011 · Journal of thoracic oncology: official publication of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: It is not known whether there have been recent changes in demographic or clinical characteristics among patients newly diagnosed with Barrett's esophagus (BE), which could be a result of changes in disease epidemiology or of screening or surveillance effects, and could have clinical implications. The aim of this study was to determine whether there has been a shift in age at diagnosis of BE over the past decade. Secondary aims were to determine whether there has been a shift in patient body mass index (BMI) or BE segment length. An endoscopic database at a tertiary medical center was used to identify all esophagogastroduodenoscopies (EGDs) performed between 1997 and 2007. The cohort was restricted to patients newly diagnosed with BE. Pathology records were reviewed to confirm biopsy findings of intestinal metaplasia (IM). BE was diagnosed in 378 subjects between 1997 and 2007. Mean age at diagnosis of BE was 60.7 +/- 14.1 years, with mean BMI of 27.4 +/- 5.2 kg/m(2) and mean BE segment length of 4.7 +/- 3.7 cm. Between 1997 and 2007 there was no significant change in mean age at diagnosis, BMI, BE segment length or in proportion of men versus women newly diagnosed. Despite an increase in volume of EGDs performed in an open-access endoscopy unit between 1997 and 2007, there was no appreciable shift in age at diagnosis of BE. BMI and BE segment length among newly diagnosed patients also remained stable over this time period.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2009 · Digestive Diseases and Sciences

  • No preview · Article · May 2009 · Gastroenterology
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    ABSTRACT: Simulation modeling can synthesize data from single-arm studies of lung cancer screening and tumor registries to investigate computed tomography (CT) screening. This study estimated changes in lung cancer outcomes through 2005, had chest CT screening been introduced in 1990. Hypothetical individuals with smoking histories representative of 6 US cohorts (white males and females aged 50, 60, and 70 years in 1990) were simulated in the Lung Cancer Policy Model, a comprehensive patient-level simulation model of lung cancer development, screening, and treatment. A no screening scenario corresponded to observed outcomes. We simulated 3 screening scenarios in current or former smokers with > or =20 pack-years as follows: 1-time screen in 1990; and annual, and twice-annually screenings beginning in 1990 and ending in 2005. Main outcomes were days of life between 1990 and 2005 and life expectancy in 1990 (estimated by simulating life histories past 2005). All screening scenarios yielded reductions (compared with no screening) in lung cancer-specific mortality by 2005, with larger reductions predicted for more frequent screening. Compared with no screening, annual screening of ever-smokers with at least 20 pack-years of cigarette exposure provided ever-smokers with an additional 11 to 33 days of life by 2005, or an additional 3-10 weeks of (undiscounted) life expectancy. In sensitivity analyses, the largest effects on gains from annual screening were due to reductions in screening adherence and increased smoking cessation. The adoption of CT screening, had it been available in 1990, might have resulted in a modest gain in life expectancy.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2008 · Cancer
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    G Scott Gazelle · Elkan F Halpern · Heather S Ryan · Angela C Tramontano
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    ABSTRACT: To retrospectively compare the frequency with which patients underwent diagnostic medical imaging procedures during episodes of outpatient medical care according to whether their physicians referred patients for imaging to themselves and/or physicians in their same specialty or to radiologists. Institutional review board approval was not necessary for this HIPAA-compliant study. An insurance claims database from a large national employer-based health plan was obtained. Claims data from 1999-2003 were grouped into episodes of care for six conditions: cardiopulmonary disease, coronary and/or cardiac disease, extremity fracture, knee pain, intraabdominal malignancy, and stroke. For each condition, each referring physician's behavior was categorized as either "same-specialty referral" or "radiologist referral" on the basis of that physician's entire history of imaging referrals for the condition. The frequency with which patients underwent diagnostic medical imaging procedures during episodes of care was compared according to whether their physicians referred patients for imaging to themselves and/or same-specialty physicians or to radiologists. Rates were compared by using chi(2) tests, and logistic regression was used to compare utilization rates, with patient age and number of comorbidities as covariates. For the conditions evaluated, physicians who referred patients to themselves or to other same-specialty physicians for diagnostic imaging used imaging between 1.12 and 2.29 times as often, per episode of care, as physicians who referred patients to radiologists (P < .005 for all comparisons). Adjusting for patient age and comorbidity, the likelihood of imaging was 1.196-3.228 times greater for patients cared forby same-specialty-referring physicians. Same-specialty-referring physicians tend to utilize imaging more frequently than do physicians who refer their patients to radiologists. These results cannot be explained by differences in case mix (because analyses were performed within six specific conditions of interest), patient age, or comorbidity.
    Preview · Article · Dec 2007 · Radiology
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    Chin Hur · Andrew T Chan · Angela C Tramontano · G Scott Gazelle
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    ABSTRACT: To systematically review studies qualitatively to compare the risks (gastrointestinal [GI] and cardiovascular) and benefits (pain control) of cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitors (coxibs) relative to an alternative therapy of a nonselective nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug (NSAID) combined with a proton-pump inhibitor (PPI) and explore circumstances when coxibs may be appropriate. Relevant studies were identified through a search of MEDLINE (Ovid Technologies, 1985-November 2005; English language, clinical trial), PubMed (1985-November 2005; English language, clinical trial, humans), and the Cochrane Collaboration using the terms selective COX-2 inhibitors and coxibs, as well as the various chemical names for specific coxib agents. Studies that compared a coxib with a nonselective NSAID and provided data concerning our outcomes of interest were included and categorized by the outcome variable, as well as by the specific coxib studied. The majority of the numerous studies that evaluated pain as an endpoint showed no difference between coxib and nonselective NSAID therapy. However, while limited, preliminary safety data regarding the effects of both classes on the upper and lower GI tract suggest coxib superiority. Although coxibs are associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular adverse events (CVEs) compared with placebo, this effect has not been conclusively shown compared with nonselective NSAIDs. Currently, coxib therapy is more expensive than combination therapy using a nonselective NSAID plus a PPI. Compared with combination therapy including a nonselective NSAID and PPI, coxibs provide equivalent pain control and may have a lower GI tract complication profile, but at an unknown increased risk of CVEs and a greater financial cost. Coxib therapy may be an appropriate treatment for chronic pain in select patients with higher risks of GI complications, lower risk of CVEs, and in whom greater cost is not a restraint.
    Preview · Article · Jul 2006 · Annals of Pharmacotherapy

Publication Stats

229 Citations
94.87 Total Impact Points


  • 2006-2015
    • Massachusetts General Hospital
      • Institute for Technology Assessment
      Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2007-2009
    • Harvard University
      • Department of Health Policy and Management
      Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States