Update of the economic analyses of the use of the colony-stimulating factors.
The colony-stimulating factors have been used effectively in a variety of clinical settings to prevent febrile neutropenia and to assist patients receiving dose-intensive chemotherapy with or without stem cell support. Several studies have confirmed the clinical efficacy of the colony-stimulating factors used prophylactically in both solid tumors and the hematologic malignancies. The cost of these agents, along with their large scale clinical use, has prompted a number of economic investigations. Economic analyses based on measures of resource utilization derived from randomized clinical trials have provided febrile neutropenia risk threshold estimates for the cost saving use of prophylactic colony-stimulating factor. A number of important studies concerning the clinical and economic impact of these agents have been reported over the past year. These include a revised cost minimization study based on improved febrile neutropenia cost information and a cost-effectiveness analysis in the adjuvant breast cancer setting based on a clinical prediction model to select patients at high risk for neutropenic complications. Continuing clinical and economic evaluation along with updating of clinical practice guidelines is needed due to rapid technologic and clinical advances in this area.
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