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CNS Drugs. 2015 Jan;29(1):71-81. doi: 10.1007/s40263-014-0207-x.

Cost effectiveness of fingolimod, teriflunomide, dimethyl fumarate and intramuscular interferon-β1a in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis.

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Department of Clinical Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Economics and Policy, Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics, University of Southern California, University Park Campus, VPD 214-L, Los Angeles, CA, 90089-3333, USA.



The aim of the study was to compare the cost effectiveness of fingolimod, teriflunomide, dimethyl fumarate, and intramuscular (IM) interferon (IFN)-β(1a) as first-line therapies in the treatment of patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS).


A Markov model was developed to evaluate the cost effectiveness of disease-modifying drugs (DMDs) from a US societal perspective. The time horizon in the base case was 5 years. The primary outcome was incremental net monetary benefit (INMB), and the secondary outcome was incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER). The base case INMB willingness-to-pay (WTP) threshold was assumed to be US$150,000 per quality-adjusted life year (QALY), and the costs were in 2012 US dollars. One-way sensitivity analyses and probabilistic sensitivity analysis were conducted to test the robustness of the model results.


Dimethyl fumarate dominated all other therapies over the range of WTPs, from US$0 to US$180,000. Compared with IM IFN-β(1a), at a WTP of US$150,000, INMBs were estimated at US$36,567, US$49,780, and US$80,611 for fingolimod, teriflunomide, and dimethyl fumarate, respectively. The ICER of fingolimod versus teriflunomide was US$3,201,672. One-way sensitivity analyses demonstrated the model results were sensitive to the acquisition costs of DMDs and the time horizon, but in most scenarios, cost-effectiveness rankings remained stable. Probabilistic sensitivity analysis showed that for more than 90% of the simulations, dimethyl fumarate was the optimal therapy across all WTP values.


The three oral therapies were favored in the cost-effectiveness analysis. Of the four DMDs, dimethyl fumarate was a dominant therapy to manage RRMS. Apart from dimethyl fumarate, teriflunomide was the most cost-effective therapy compared with IM IFN-β(1a), with an ICER of US$7,115.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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