MedicineWorld.Org
Your gateway to the world of medicine
Home
News
Cancer News
About Us
Cancer
Health Professionals
Patients and public
Contact Us
Disclaimer

From Medicineworld.org: Good For The Heart And For The Wallet

Cardiology Aspirin and vioxx HDL Cholesterol  


Do You Read All Of Our Cancer Blogs?

Do You Read All Of Blogs?
Do you read all of the blogs published by medicineworld.org? Many of our bloggers are busy keeping you updated on the various health related topics. We publish the following blogs at this time.

Cancer blog: I manage the cancer blog with lots of help and support form other bloggers. Through this cancer blog my friends and I try to bring stories of hope for patients with cancer. The cancer blog often republishes important blog posts from other cancer related blogs at Medicineworld.org. If you are searching for a blog that covers wide variety of cancer topics, this may be the one for you.

Breast cancer blog: Breast cancer blog is run by Emily and other bloggers and they bring you the latest stories, news and events that are related to breast cancer. Increasing awareness about breast cancer among women and in the general population is the main goal of this breast cancer blog.

Lung cancer blog: Lung cancer blog is managed by Scott with the help of other bloggers. Through this blog Scott and his friends constantly remind the readers about the dangers of smoking. It's a never-ending struggle against this miserable disease with which a social stigma of smoking is associated.

Colon cancer blog: Colon cancer blog is run by Sue and other bloggers. Sue brings a personal touch to the colon cancer blog since her mother died of colon cancer few years ago. She writes about stories, research news and advances in treatment related to colon cancer.

Prostate cancer blog: Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among American men. American Cancer Society estimates that over 230,000 new cases of prostate cancer occur in the United state every year. This important blog about prostate cancer is run by Mark and other bloggers. This blog brings news, stories, and other personal observations related to prostate cancer.

Medicineworld.org publishes a diabetes watch blog and this blog is run by JoAnn other bloggers. This diabetes watch blog brings you the latest in the field of diabetes. This includes personal stories, advances in diagnosis and treatment, and other observations about diabetes. Improving awareness about diabetes is an important mission of this group.

Janet      

Good For The Heart And For The Wallet


Good For The Heart And For The Wallet
Health care costs often increase when newer, more effective therapies are introduced to the marketplace, placing a financial burden on patients and insurers that can last for years. However, the same may not be true for a drug recently shown to greatly improve outcomes in African-American heart failure patients.

According to a report in today's issue of Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association, this heart failure drug is not only a promising therapy option, but one that is cost-effective as well.

A team of scientists led by Derek Angus, M.D., M.P.H., professor of critical care medicine at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, examined data from the African-American Heart Failure Trial (A-HeFT) study in order to determine the trial participants' ongoing health care costs. AHeFT, the results of which were published November 2004 in the New England Journal of Medicine, compared outcomes in patients who took a medicine with two active drug ingredients, isosorbide dinitrate and hydralazine (ISDN/HYD), to those in patients receiving a placebo regimen. The trial demonstrated the effectiveness of ISDN/HYD for treating heart failure in African-American patients.

According to the new analysis, total health care costs for the AHeFT participants who were treated with ISDN/HYD were 22 percent lower. Their total health care costs - those resulting from hospitalizations, doctors visits for any conditions or illnesses, but not including the cost of the drug itself - averaged $15,384 over the course of the 12-month trial. Such costs for patients who did not receive the drug averaged $19,728. Health care costs specifically related to heart failure were almost 34 percent lower on average, $5,997 versus $9,144. When the cost of the drug was factored in, there was still an average savings of 6 percent, or $533, on heart failure-related costs for ISDN/HYD patients compared to those who didn't receive the drug, and a 9 percent, or $1,730, average savings on total health care costs.

"This medicine clearly decreased healthcare costs for AHeFT participants during the course of the clinical trial, even when the cost of the drug itself was taken into account," Dr. Angus said. "Based on the savings we've seen for one year and our modeling that projects future health care cost expenditures, it's likely that the cost-effectiveness of this drug will bear out in the long term as well".

Dr. Angus and colleagues developed a model to predict costs over the course of the patient's lifespan beyond the 12-month trial period. Even under the most pessimistic assumption - that, over time, the drug would no longer provide therapeutic benefits - the model predicted that for 95 percent of patients, health care costs would still amount to less than what is considered to be a reasonable threshold for cost-effectiveness. Specifically, the model found the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio would be better than $50,000 per life-year gained, an amount widely regarded as the ceiling for costs that are acceptable to society. Scientists define the cost-effectiveness ratio as the additional health care costs incurred per life-year gained as a result of a therapy. Essentially, it represents the additional costs to society brought about by use of the drug.

"Using very conservative restrictions, our model suggests that this drug, even if used for lifetime courses over a number of years, should be very cost-effective," Dr. Angus said. "The key will be appropriate patient selection and careful attention to compliance with therapy. Our findings apply to the types of individuals, African-Americans with moderate to severe heart failure, who were enrolled in AHeFT. We do not know whether similar benefits would be found in other groups of patients".

The cost analysis incorporated actual data, such as frequency and length of hospitalization, office and emergency room visits and doctor services during the 12-month clinical trial, and projections for the long-term model. Medicare guidelines were used to estimate and calculate costs.

"Because we relied on the actual data regarding health care resource use, our primary findings are likely to be very robust, as robust as the overall clinical trial results from AHeFT," said Dr. Angus.

During the study, 994 hospitalizations occurred, with 43 percent of these related to heart failure. Patients treated with ISDN/HYD had 30 percent fewer hospitalizations, and their hospital stays were one day shorter compared to the placebo group, resulting in a 41 percent reduction in the number of days spent in the hospital for heart failure. The ISDN/HYD group also had fewer hospitalizations for any reason, and the length of stay for all hospitalizations was shorter.

A-HeFT involved 1,050 African-American patients at 11 sites with New York Heart Association Class III or Class IV failure, which is defined as moderate to severe heart failure resulting in significant limitations to physical activity.

AHeFT participants were randomly assigned to receive ISDN/HYD or a placebo in addition to their regular heart failure treatment. The patients' age averaged 56.8 years, and 40 percent of the patients were women. The patients were followed for an average of 12.8 months, and the study ended prematurely when a preliminary analysis showed that patients treated with ISDN/HYD had a significantly lower mortality - 6.2 percent compared to 10.2 percent. Last June, the drug won approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the therapy of heart failure in African-American patients and is now being marketed as BiDilandreg; by NitroMed, Inc., of Lexington, Mass.


Source: University of Pittsburgh Medical Center


Did you know?
Health care costs often increase when newer, more effective therapies are introduced to the marketplace, placing a financial burden on patients and insurers that can last for years. However, the same may not be true for a drug recently shown to greatly improve outcomes in African-American heart failure patients.

Medicineworld.org: Good For The Heart And For The Wallet

Aggressive heart therapies still underused| Aspirin might prevent vioxx cardiac damage| Bariatric surgery to control weight in cardiac patients| Black immigrants from africa arrive healthier than those from europe| Exercise stress management gives physiological benefits for heart patients| Heart and cell signaling| Link between obesity inflammation and vascular disease found| Pig hearts in nonhuman primates a success story| Strategies to raise hdl cholesterol levels| Stress test identifies high risk people for coronory heart disease|

Copyright statement
The contents of this web page are protected. Legal action may follow for reproduction of materials without permission.