Cost-Utility Analysis of Continuation Versus Discontinuation of First-Line Chemotherapy in Patients With Metastatic Squamous-Cell Esophageal Cancer: Economic Evaluation Alongside the E-DIS Trial

May 1, 2021, 00:00 AM
Section Order : 676
First Page : 676


Continuous chemotherapy has been used to treat patients with metastatic esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (mESCC), despite weak evidence supporting a clinical benefit, associated side effects for the patients, and unjustified medical costs. In the French setting, we conducted a cost-utility analysis alongside the randomized E-DIS trial (NCT01248299), which compared first-line fluorouracil/platinum-based chemotherapy continuation (CT-CONT) to CT discontinuation (CT-DISC) in progressive-free patients after an initial 6-week treatment phase.


A partitioned survival analysis was performed using patient-level data collected during the trial for survival outcomes, quality of life (EQ-5D-3L), and medical costs. The mean quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) and medical costs were estimated over an 18-month period to assess the incremental net monetary benefit and incremental cost-effectiveness ratio. Uncertainty was handled using the nonparametric bootstrap and univariate analysis. Sixty-seven patients with mESCC were randomized and included in the cost-utility analysis.


On average, CT-CONT slightly decreased the number of QALYs (-0.038) and increased the cost per patient (+ €1177). At a willingness-to-pay threshold of €50 000/QALY, the incremental net monetary benefit was negative (-€3077 [95% confidence interval: -6564; 4359]), and the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio was -30 958€/QALY (CT-CONT dominated). The probability of the CT-CONT treatment option being cost-effective at a willingness-to-pay threshold of €50 000/QALY, compared to CT-DISC, was 29%.


CT-DISC may be considered as an alternative therapeutic option to CT-CONT in patients with mESCC who have stable disease after an initial chemotherapy treatment phase. A continuous chemotherapy could indeed reduce the number of QALYs because of the disutility associated with the continuous treatment.
HEOR Topics :
  • Economic Evaluation
  • Gastrointestinal Disorders
  • Methodological & Statistical Research
  • Oncology
  • Specialized Treatment Areas
  • Specific Diseases & Conditions
  • Study Approaches
Tags :
  • chemotherapy
  • cost utility
  • discontinuation
  • metastatic esophageal squamous cell cancer
  • randomized controlled trial
Regions :