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Treatment-related Adverse Events in Pancreatic Cancer Impose Considerable Costs

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Costs related to adverse events associated with US Food and Drug Administration approved/National Comprehensive Cancer Network Category 1 treatments for pancreatic cancer imposed considerable costs on Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries, according to study results presented by Jared Hirsch, BS, actuarial analyst, Milliman Inc, at HOPA’s 16th Annual Conference.

In the study, data from 2013 to 2017 for all Medicare fee-for-service Part A and B claims for 45 million beneficiaries was analyzed. Claims for professional services and durable medical equipment were excluded.

A total of 9185 patients who received chemotherapy and 22,241 controls were included.

The 30-day costs, starting on the day of onset of the adverse, for treatment with gemcitabine/nab-paclitaxel, gemcitabine monotherapy, FOLFIRINOX (folinic acid, fluorouracil, irinotecan, and oxaliplatin), and liposomal irinotecan, which was most commonly used as a second-line therapy, were calculated.

Anemia was the most common adverse event, followed by neutropenia, and thrombocytopenia with associated mean 30-day incremental costs ranging from $3,257 to $3,924, $1,284 and $2,503, and $2,678 to $3,721, respectively.


Hirsch J, Dieguez G, Cockrun P. The cost of adverse events for FDA-approved/NCCN category 1 treatmetns for Medicare fee-for-service patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer. Presented at: HOPA 16th Annual Conference. March 11-14, 2020, Tampa, Florida.


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