The Dry Eye Zone

Rebecca's Blog


Study: Where da numbers?

Right on boys. The acid test: IS LIFE BETTER with this drug? Let's see some numbers please. It's not new anymore - it's been around long enough to figure this out.

Pharmacoeconomics of new medications for common chronic ophthalmic diseases
Hirsch JD, Morello C, Singh R, Robbins SL.
Surv Ophthalmol. 2007 Nov-Dec;52(6):618-33

There is increasing pressure for medical care reimbursement to be linked to outcomes. New medications approved for glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and dry eye disease may offer improved outcomes, but they have higher acquisition costs. This article reviews published pharmacoeconomic studies assessing the incremental change in outcomes achieved vs. the increased medication costs incurred....Notably missing in all analyses are the effects of improved treatment on patient productivity. Although the diversity and small number of studies limit conclusions, there is some evidence that the newer glaucoma medications, as a group, produce economic offsets such as reduced glaucoma surgeries and fewer physician visits. Photodynamic therapy for AMD may be cost-effective when used early in patients with better visual acuity allowing cost-offsets over longer periods of time to be considered. The single pharmacoeconomic analysis of topical cyclosporine for dry eye disease was only hypothesis-generating. Comprehensive studies that investigate clinical, economic, and humanistic outcomes for the patient and society are needed to adequately assess the comparative value of current and future ophthalmic medications.