Economic evaluation of folate supplementation during methotrexate treatment in rheumatoid arthritis.
until further notice
SourceThe Journal of Rheumatology, 31, 5, (2004), pp. 902-908
Article / Letter to editor
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Medical Technology Assessment
The Journal of Rheumatology
SubjectEBP 2: Effective Hospital Care; UMCN 4.2: Chronic inflammation and autoimmunity
OBJECTIVE: To determine cost-effectiveness of folic or folinic acid supplementation in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) who started methotrexate (MTX) treatment. METHODS: An economic evaluation, performed alongside a randomized, double blind, placebo controlled trial with followup of 48 weeks. Patients started MTX with placebo (n = 137), folic acid (n = 133), or folinic acid (n = 141). Outcome measures were drug survival and quality-adjusted life-years (QALY), measured with the EuroQol questionnaire. Both medical and nonmedical costs were analyzed. RESULTS: Drug survival after 48 weeks was 60% for placebo, 81% for folic acid, and 87% for folinic acid. QALY during a 48 week period were 0.55 (95% CI 0.52-0.58) in the placebo group, 0.55 (95% CI 0.52-0.58) in the folic acid group, and 0.58 (95% CI 0.56-0.60) in the folinic acid group. Mean medical costs were 1398 US dollars (placebo), 1409 US dollars (folic acid), and 1776 US dollars (folinic acid). Mean total costs were 3339 US dollars, 3632 US dollars, and 3296 US dollars, respectively. CONCLUSION: In terms of resource deployment, no statistically significant difference was found between the 3 strategies. The preferred strategy consists of folic acid supplementation because of improved drug survival.
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