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Cost-effectiveness analysis of current varicose veins treatments

  • Epstein, D
  • Bootun, R
  • Diop, M
  • Ortega-Ortega, M
  • Lane, TRA
  • Davies, AH
Publication Date
May 02, 2021
Spiral - Imperial College Digital Repository
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OBJECTIVE: To analyze the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of technologies for treatment of varicose veins over 5 years - conservative care (CONS), surgery (HL/S), ultrasound guided foam sclerotherapy (UGFS), endovenous laser ablation (EVLA), and radiofrequency ablation (RFA), mechanochemical ablation (MOCA) and cyanoacrylate glue occlusion (CAE). METHODS: A systematic review was updated and used to construct a Markov decision model. Outcomes were re-intervention on the truncal vein, re-treatment of residual varicosities and quality-adjusted life years (QALY) and costs over five years. RESULTS: UGFS has a significantly greater re-intervention rate than other procedures, while there is no significant difference between the other procedures. The cost per QALY of EVLA versus UGFS in our base-case model is £16966 ($23700) per QALY, which is considered cost-effective in the UK. RFA, MOCA and CAE have greater procedure costs than EVLA with no evidence of greater benefit for patients. CONCLUSIONS: EVLA is the most cost-effective therapeutic option, with RFA a close second, in adult patients requiring treatment in the upper leg for incompetence of the GSV. MOCA, UGFS, CAE, CONS and HL/S are not cost-effective at current prices in the UK National Health Service. MOCA and CAE appear promising but further evidence on effectiveness, re-interventions and health-related quality of life is needed, as well as how cost-effectiveness may vary across settings and reimbursement systems.

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