Economic evaluation of laparoscopic surgery for colorectal cancer
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Objectives: To assess the cost-effectiveness of laparoscopic surgery compared with open surgery for the treatment of colorectal cancer. Methods: A Markov model was developed to model cost-effectiveness over 25 years. Data on the clinical effectiveness of laparoscopic and open surgery for colorectal cancer were obtained from a systematic review of the literature. Data on costs came from a systematic review of economic evaluations and from published sources. The outcomes of the model were presented as the incremental cost per life year gained and using cost-effectiveness acceptability curves (CEACs) to illustrate the likelihood that a treatment was cost-effective at various threshold values for society’s willingness to pay for an additional life year. Results: Laparoscopic surgery was on average £300 more costly and slightly less effective than open surgery and had a 30% chance of being cost-effective if society is willing to pay £30,000 for a life year. One interpretation of the available data suggests equal survival and disease-free survival. Making this assumption, laparoscopic surgery had a greater chance of being considered cost-effective. Presenting the results as incremental cost per quality adjusted life year (QALY) made no difference to the results, as utility data were poor. Evidence suggests short-term benefits following laparoscopic repair. This benefit would have to be at least 0.01 of a QALY for laparoscopic surgery to be considered cost-effective. Conclusions: Laparoscopic surgery is likely to be associated with short-term quality of life benefits, similar long-term outcomes and an additional £300 per patient. A judgement is required as to whether the short-term benefits are worth this extra cost.
de Verteuil, R., Hernandez, R., and Vale, L. (2007). Economic evaluation of laparoscopic surgery for colorectal cancer. International Journal of Technology Assessment in Health Care, 23(4), pp.464-472.