Indexed on: 22 May '19Published on: 21 May '19Published in: Journal of medical economics
Standard of care for cancer-related venous thromboembolism (VTE) has been low molecular weight heparin (LMWH), but oral anticoagulants are also widely prescribed. This study compared VTE-related healthcare resource utilization and costs of cancer patients treated with anticoagulants. Claims data from Humana Database (1/1/2013-05/31/2015) were analyzed. Based on the first anticoagulant received, patients were classified into LMWH, warfarin, or rivaroxaban cohorts. Characteristics were evaluated during the 6 months pre-index date (i.e., the first VTE); VTE-related resource utilization and costs were evaluated during follow-up. Cohorts were compared using rate ratios, and p-values and 95% confidence intervals were calculated. Healthcare costs were evaluated per-patient-per-year (PPPY) and compared using mean cost differences. A total of 2,428 patients (LMWH: n = 660; warfarin: n = 1,061; rivaroxaban: n = 707) were included. Compared to patients treated with LMWH, patients treated with rivaroxaban had significantly fewer VTE-related hospitalizations, hospitalization days, and emergency room and outpatient visits, resulting in an increase of $12,000 VTE-related healthcare costs PPPY with LMWH versus rivaroxaban. Patients treated with rivaroxaban had significantly lower VTE-related resource utilization compared to patients treated with warfarin; however, VTE-related costs were similar between cohorts. The higher drug costs ($1,519) were offset by significantly lower outpatient (-$1,039) and hospitalization costs (-$522) in rivaroxaban relative to warfarin cohort. Healthcare resource use and costs associated with VTE treatment in cancer patients are highest with LMWH relative to warfarin and rivaroxaban.