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Treatment of multiple sclerosis with interferon β: An appraisal of cost-effectiveness and quality of life

Lookup NU author(s): Dr David Parkin, Dr Ann Jacoby, Paul McNamee, Paul Miller, Professor Simon ThomasORCiD, Emeritus Professor David Bates


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Objective - To evaluate the cost-effectiveness of interferon beta-1b (IFβ-1b) for relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS). Methods - Construction of a cost-effectiveness model using published data on IFβ-1b effectiveness and the natural history of RRMS, and new data on costs and quality of life (QoL) from a sample of 102 patients with RRMS and resident in northern England. Results - Poorer QoL was found for patients with multiple sclerosis compared with the general population; those who had had a relapse; those with worse states identified by a clinical measure (expanded disability status scale (EDSS)). Relapses have effects over several months. Health state valuations were higher than in the general population. Costs were higher in relapse than remission and for worse EDSS states. IFβ-1b costs were larger than cost savings. The best cost-effectiveness estimate was u28,700 per relapse avoided, which is u809,900 per QALY gained; or u328,300 per QALY gained allowing for effects of progression over 5 years. Estimates were robust to changes in assumptions. Conclusions - The impact of multiple sclerosis on QoL is substantial. Future trials should base outcomes measurement on QoL and be better linked to natural history and cost data. IFβ-1b produces important occasional short term QoL gains, but small gains in QALYs overall and large additional costs.

Publication metadata

Author(s): McNamee P; Miller P; Thomas S; Parkin D; Jacoby A; Bates D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Neurology Neurosurgery and Psychiatry

Year: 2000

Volume: 68

Issue: 2

Pages: 144-149

ISSN (print): 0022-3050

ISSN (electronic): 1468-330X

Publisher: BMJ Publishing Group Ltd


DOI: 10.1136/jnnp.68.2.144

PubMed id: 10644777


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