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[Management costs of chest and CNS-related adverse events associated with the treatment of acute migraine attacks with oral triptans.]

Author(s): Slof J, Badia X, Lainez-Andres JM, Galvan J, Heras J

Affiliation(s): Universidad Autonoma de Barcelona, Bellaterra. ericjohn.slof@uab.es

Publication date & source: 2005-07, Neurologia., 20(6):290-8.

INTRODUCTION: Although adverse events of triptans are usually not important from a clinical point of view, they can worry patients and lead them to consume healthcare resources. METHODS: A decision analytic model was used to represent the behavior and management of patients who suffered adverse events after taking a triptan. Using data about the incidence of adverse events, the behavior and management of patients, and the unit cost of the healthcare resource consumed, the costs of treating adverse events were calculated, as was the iatrogenic cost factor of the triptans available in Spain. RESULTS: 10 % to 20 % of patients who suffer a chest or CNS-related adverse advent related to triptan use seek medical attention. The management cost of a chest-related event was estimated to be euros 66,43, euros 33,09, or euros 137,01, depending on whether the patient consulted a neurologist, a primary care physician, or a hospital emergency department. For CNS-related events the management cost was estimated to be euros 52,88, euros 16,89 or euros 102,17, respectively. Excluding the placebo effect, the resulting iatrogenic cost factor varied between 1 for almotriptan 12,5 mg and 1,21 for zolmitriptan 2,5 mg. In absolute values, the average cost per patient (above placebo) varied between 0 euros for almotriptan 12,5 mg and euros 1,17 for eletriptan 80 mg. CONCLUSIONS: The management of adverse events can add substantial costs to a treatment with triptans. These costs vary considerably between triptans due to differences in the incidence of adverse events. Lowest costs were found for almotriptan 12,5 mg.

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