Mateus C, Wolowacz S, Pereira JA. Cost-effectiveness of dabigatran etexilate for the primary prevention of venous thromboembolism in total hip and knee replacement in Portugal. Poster presented at the 2009 ISPOR 14th Annual International Meeting; May 1, 2009. Orlando, FL. [abstract] Value Health. 2009 May; 12(3):A148.

OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the cost-effectiveness of dabigatran etexilate (DGB) compared to enoxaparin in the prevention of venous thromboembolism (VTE) following total hip replacement (THR) or total knee replacement (TKR) from the perspective of the Portuguese NHS.

METHODS: DBG (220 mg once daily) was compared to enoxaparin (40 mg once daily) in patients undergoing THR (prophylaxis 28–35 days) and TKR (6–10 days). A decision tree was used to model the ten week post-surgery acute phase. A Markov process modeled long-term events such as recurrent VTE, postthrombotic syndrome and intracranial hemorrhage for patient’s remaining lifetimes. Relative risks for VTE and bleed events were derived from the DBG phase III trials, RE-NOVATE and RE-MODEL which compared DBG with enoxaparin 40 mg once daily. Published longitudinal studies were used to estimate the probabilities of longterm events. Resource use associated with administration of the prophylaxis and the management of clinical events was obtained from a national multi-centre prospective study involving 50 patients. Unit costs were taken from national sources. Utility weights were taken from published international literature.

RESULTS: VTE and bleeding rates were similar for DBG and enoxaparin. DBG was marginally more expensive than enoxaparin in TKR but less costly in THR, since no nursing time for administration of treatment is required in hospital or following discharge. The probabilistic analysis estimated that DBG cost an additional €11 per patient in TKR (ICER €2,848 /QALY) and saved €255 per patient in THR. The probability of DBG being costeffective was 79% in TKR and 99% in THR at a willingness to pay threshold of €20,000 per QALY. Results proved to be robust across a wide range of sensitivity analyses.

CONCLUSIONS: DBG is cost-saving in THR compared to enoxaparin and non-inferior in terms of efficacy or safety. Thus, DBG is cost-effective for the prevention of VTE in patients undergoing THR.

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