Cost-effectiveness analysis of oxaliplatin compared with 5-fluorouracil/leucovorin in adjuvant treatment of stage III colon cancer in the US

Samuel Aballea, Jeremy V. M. Chancellor, Maria Raikou, Michael F. Drummond, Milton C. Weinstein, Sophia Jourdan, John Bridgewater

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BACKGROUND. The MOSAIC trial demonstrated that oxaliplatin/5-fluorouracil/leucovorin (FU/LV) (FOLFOX4) as adjuvant treatment of TNM stage II and III colon cancer significantly improves disease-free survival compared with 5-FU/LV alone. For stage III patients the 4-year disease-ftee survival (DFS) was 69% in the FOLFOX4 arm vs 61% in the LV5FU2 arm, P =.002). The cost-effectiveness of FOLFOX4 in stage III patients was evaluated from a US Medicare perspective.

METHODS. By using individual patient-level data from the MOSAIC trial (median follow-up: 44.2 months), DFS and overall survival (OS) were estimated up to 4 years from randomization. DFS was extrapolated from 4 to 5 years by fitting a Weibull model and subsequent survival was estimated from life tables. OS beyond 4 years was predicted from the extrapolated DFS estimates and observed survival after recurrence. Costs were calculated from trial data and external estimates of resources to manage recurrence.

RESULTS. Patients on FOLFOX4 were predicted to gain 2.00 (95% confidence interval [Cl]: 0.63, 3.37) years of DFS over those on 5-FU/LV The predicted life expectancy of stage III patients on FOLFOX4 and 5-FU/LV was 17.61 and 16.26 years, respectively. Mean total lifetime disease-related costs were $56,300 with oxaliplatin and $39,300 with 5-FU/LV. Compared with 5-FU/LV, FOLFOX4 was estimated to cost $20,600 per life-year gained and $22,800 per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) gained, discounting costs and outcomes at 3% per annum.

CONCLUSIONS. FOLFOX4 is likely to be cost-effective compared with 5-FU/LV in the adjuvant treatment of stage III colon cancer. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio compares favorably with other funded interventions in oncology. Cancer 2007; 109:1082-9. (c) 2007 American Cancer Society.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1082-1089
Number of pages8
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 15 Mar 2007

Bibliographical note

Open access copy available from the journal web site.


  • oxaliplatin
  • colon cancer
  • cost effectiveness
  • survival analysis

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