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Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2001 May;86(5):537-44.

Comparison of the cost-effectiveness of budesonide and sodium cromoglycate in the management of childhood asthma in everyday clinical practice.

Author information

1
Health Economics and Outcomes Research, AstraZeneca R&D Lund, Sweden. fredrik.l.andersson@astrazeneca.com

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Budesonide and sodium cromoglycate are both recommended as maintenance therapy for childhood asthma.

OBJECTIVE:

To compare the cost-effectiveness of these two treatment strategies in clinical practice, in an open-label, pharmacoeconomic clinical trial.

METHODS:

Health economics were evaluated in 138 children, ages 5 to 11 years, with unstable asthma not previously treated with corticosteroids or cromones. The asthma was stabilized during 4 to 6 weeks with budesonide 200 to 400 microg twice daily. The children were then randomly allocated to one of the two treatment strategies aiming at maintaining asthma control for 12 months; budesonide 400 microg/day (N = 69) or sodium cromoglycate 60 mg/day (N = 69). If asthma control was judged unsatisfactory, the doses were increased or the children were switched to the alternate treatment.

RESULTS:

In children continuing on the same treatment, the degree of asthma control was similar in the two groups at study end. To maintain asthma control, 42% of cromoglycate children switched to budesonide, and then experienced a 14% increase in symptom-free days. No budesonide patient had to switch therapy because of lack of asthma control. Although not statistically significant, total annual cost per patient was 24% (Swedish kronor 4195; US $487; Euro 485) lower in the budesonide than the cromoglycate group, mainly due to a lower cost for asthma medication.

CONCLUSIONS:

A budesonide strategy for continued maintenance treatment, after an initial period of stabilizing treatment with budesonide, resulted in lower costs and less drug switches than did a strategy with sodium cromoglycate.

PMID:
11379805
DOI:
10.1016/S1081-1206(10)62902-X
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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