Evaluation of costs and effects of epidural analgesia and patient-controlled intravenous analgesia after major abdominal surgery
2006 (English)In: British Journal of Anaesthesia, ISSN 0007-0912, Vol. 96, no 1, 111-117 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Background. The outcome of different treatment strategies for postoperative pain has been an issue of controversy. Apart from efficacy and effectiveness a policy decision should also consider cost-effectiveness. Since economic analyses on postoperative pain treatment are rare we developed a decision model in a pilot cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA) comparing epidural analgesia (EDA) and patient-controlled intravenous analgesia (PCIA) after major abdominal surgery in routine care. Methods. Using a decision-tree model, treatment with EDA (ropivacaine and morphine) was compared with PCIA (morphine). Effects and costs of treatment were established. The number of pain-free days at rest (pain intensity <30 using visual analogue scale 1-100 mm) was the primary measure of effect. An incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) was calculated as the difference in direct costs divided by the difference in effect. A database on 644 patients collected for the purpose of quality control during the period of 1997 to 1999 was the main data source. Sensitivity analysis was used to test uncertain data. Results. EDA was more effective in terms of pain-free days but more expensive. The additional cost for each pain-free day was 5652 Euros. Conclusion. It is a judgement of value if the additional cost is reasonable. When the cost of around 55 000 Euros per gained life-year with full health for other interventions is debated, our result indicates poor cost-effectiveness for EDA. Before any conclusion can be drawn concerning policy recommendations the difference in costs has to be related to other outcome measures as length of hospital stay, morbidity and mortality are required. © The Board of Management and Trustees of the British Journal of Anaesthesia 2005. All rights reserved.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2006. Vol. 96, no 1, 111-117 p.
National CategoryMedical and Health Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-33856DOI: 10.1093/bja/aei270Local ID: 19929OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-33856DiVA: diva2:254679