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A cost-utility analysis of tension-free vaginal tape versus colposuspension for primary urodynamic stress incontinence

Lookup NU author(s): Paul Hilton


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Objective: To assess the cost effectiveness of tension-free vaginal tape compared with open Burch colposuspension as a primary treatment for urodynamic stress incontinence. Design: Cost-utility analysis alongside a multicentre randomised comparative trial. Setting: Gynaecology or Urology departments in 14 centres in the UK and Ireland, including University-associated teaching hospitals and district general hospitals. Population: Women with urodynamic stress incontinence. Exclusion criteria were: (1) detrusor overactivity; (2) major voiding problems; (3) prolapse; (4) previous surgery for incontinence or prolapse. Methods: Resource use data were collected on all 344 patients in the trial, including length of hospital stay, time in theatre and management of complications; resource use was costed using UK unit costs at 1999-2000 prices. Main outcome measures: Health outcomes were expressed in terms of quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) between baseline and six months follow up, based on women's responses to the EQ-5D health questionnaire. Results: Tension-free vaginal tape resulted in a mean cost saving of £243 (95% CI £341 to £201) compared with colposuspension. Differential mean QALYs per patient (tension-free vaginal tape - colposuspension) was 0.01 (95% CI -0.01 to 0.03). The probability of tension-free vaginal tape being, on average, less costly than colposuspension, was 100%, and the probability of tension-free vaginal tape being more cost effective than colposuspension was 94.6% if the decision-maker was willing to pay £30,000 per additional QALY. Conclusion: The results from this trial suggest that, over a post-operative period of six months, tension-free vaginal tape is a cost effective alternative to colposuspension. The results will need to be reassessed on the basis of longer follow up.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Manca A, Sculpher MJ, Ward K, Hilton P

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Year: 2003

Volume: 110

Issue: 3

Pages: 255-262

ISSN (print): 1470-0328

ISSN (electronic): 0140-7686

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing


DOI: 10.1016/S1470-0328(03)02915-X

PubMed id: 12628263


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