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  • Huoponen, Saara; Aaltonen, Kalle J.; Viikinkoski, Jaana; Rutanen, Jarno; Relas, Heikki; Taimen, Kirsi; Puolakka, Kari; Nordström, Dan; Blom, Marja (2019)
    Objectives The objective of this study was to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of abatacept, tocilizumab, and tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitors as compared with rituximab in Finnish rheumatoid arthritis patients, who have previously been treated with TNF inhibitors. Methods A patient-level simulation model was developed to predict costs and outcomes associated with four biological drugs (abatacept, tocilizumab, rituximab and TNF inhibitors) in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. Following lack of efficacy or adverse events, the patients were switched to another biological drug until all four options were exhausted. After that, the patients were assumed to receive a 6th line treatment until death. The patients' baseline characteristics and regression models used in the simulation were based on observational data from the National Register for Biological Treatments in Finland. Direct costs comprised drug costs, administration costs, costs of switching, and outpatient and inpatient care, while indirect costs included disability pension and sick leaves due to rheumatoid arthritis. Several subgroup and deterministic sensitivity analyses were conducted. Results Drug costs were the lowest for rituximab, but when administration costs and costs of switching were included, drug costs were the lowest for TNF inhibitors. Abatacept was associated with the highest drug costs, whereas rituximab was associated with the highest healthcare costs. In total, TNF inhibitors had the lowest direct costs, while rituximab had the highest direct costs. The amount of quality-adjusted life years (QALY) gained ranged from 9.405 for rituximab to 9.661 for TNF inhibitors. TNF inhibitors, abatacept, and tocilizumab were dominant in comparison to RTX. Conclusions TNF inhibitors, abatacept, and tocilizumab had lower costs and higher QALYs than rituximab, and therefore, they were dominant in comparison to rituximab. As TNF inhibitors had the lowest costs and highest QALYs, they were the most cost-effective treatment option.
  • Aaltonen, Kalle; Heinonen, Arto; Joensuu, Jaana; Parmanne, Pinja; Karjalainen, Anna; Varjolahti-Lehtinen, Tuire; Uutela, Toini; Puurtinen-Vilkki, Maija; Arstila, Leena; Blom, Marja; Sokka, Tuulikki; Nordström, Dan (2017)
    Background and objectives: Tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-inhibitors are used to treat psoriatic arthritis (PsA), but only a limited number of observational studies on this subject have been published thus far. The aim of this research was to analyze the effectiveness and drug survival of TNF-inhibitors in the treatment of PsA. Methods: PsA patients identified from the National Register for Biologic Treatment in Finland (ROB-FIN) starting their first, second, or third TNF-inhibitor treatment between 2004 and 2014 were included. Effectiveness was measured using ACR and EULAR response criteria and modeled using ordinal logistic regression. Treatment persistence was analyzed using Kaplan-Meier survival analysis and Cox proportional hazards model. Results: The study comprised 765 patients and 990 TNF-inhibitor treatment courses. EULAR moderate treatment responses at 6 months were achieved by 68% and 37% of the users of the first and the second or the third biologic, respectively. The probabilities of discontinuing the treatment within 12 and 24 months were 20% and 28%, respectively. Adjusted treatment responses to all TNF-inhibitors were similar; however, co-therapy with conventional synthetic disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (csDMARDs) was not associated with better effectiveness. Adalimumab [hazard ratio (HR) = 0.62; 95% confidence interval (CD: 0.44-0.88] was superior to infliximab in drug survival while etanercept (HR = 0.77, 95% CI: 0.55-1.1) and golimumab (HR = 0.75, 95% CI: 0.46-1.2) did not differ from it. Co-medication with csDMARDs did not statistically improve drug survival. Conclusion: All available TNF-inhibitors showed similar treatment responses with or without csDMARDs. Adalimumab was associated with better drug survival when compared to infliximab. (C) 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.