Objectives: Tegaserod is effective, safe, and well-tolerated in the treatment of patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) with constipation. The aim of this study was to assess, from a payer perspective, the cost-effectiveness of tegaserod in the treatment of IBS patients, based on the TEgaserod in NORdic region (TENOR) trial data.
Methods: Female and male patients (Rome II criteria) were randomized to receive tegaserod 6 mg b.i.d. or placebo for 12 weeks. Patients (247 tegaserod; 238 placebo) completed the EuroQol EQ-5D questionnaire at baseline, Week 4, and Week 12. A 12-week economic study was undertaken to assess the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) of tegaserod in terms of cost per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) gained. Cost-effectiveness acceptability curves were calculated toestimate the probability of tegaserod being cost-effective at different benchmark values of cost per QALY gained.
Results: By assuming a daily drug cost to payers of €2, €3, and €4, the ICER of tegaserod ranges between €19,000 and €38,000 per QALY gained, with the percentage of the bootstrap estimates below the willingness to pay level of €50,000 per QALY gained ranging between 90% and 69%.
Conclusions: This study established directly from a randomized controlled clinical trial that tegaserod is cost-effective in the treatment of non-D-IBS patients.