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Am J Cardiol. 1998 May 1;81(9):1110-5.

Direct medical costs of coronary artery disease in the United States.

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  • 1Medical Research International, Burlington, Massachusetts 01803-5152, USA.


To generate current incidence-based estimates of the direct medical costs of coronary artery disease (CAD) in the United States, a Markov model of the economic costs of CAD-related medical care was developed. Risks of initial and subsequent CAD events (sudden CAD death, fatal/nonfatal acute myocardial infarction [AMI], unstable angina, and stable angina) were estimated using new Framingham Heart Study risk equations and population risk profiles derived from national survey data. Costs were assumed to be those related to treatment of initial and subsequent CAD events ("event-related") and follow-up care ("nonevent-related"), respectively. Cost estimates were derived primarily from national public-use databases. First-year direct medical costs of treating CAD events are estimated to be $17,532 for fatal AMI, $15,540 for nonfatal AMI, $2,569 for stable angina, $12,058 for unstable angina, and $713 for sudden CAD death. Nonevent-related direct costs of CAD treatment are estimated to be $1,051 annually. The annual incidence of CAD in the United States is estimated at 616,900 cases, with first-year costs of treatment totaling $5.54 billion. Five- and 10-year cumulative costs in 1995 dollars for patients who are initially free of CAD are estimated at $9.2 billion and $16.5 billion, respectively; for all patients with CAD, these costs are estimated to be $71.5 billion and $126.6 billion, respectively. The direct medical costs of CAD create a large economic burden for the United States health-care system.

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