Pharmacoeconomics of amifostine in ovarian cancer

E. A. Calhoun, C. L. Bennett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Physicians are frequently pressured to make therapeutic decisions within a cost-effective framework to demonstrate value to managed care. Because cancer is a chronic disease, health care costs are known to be expensive and physicians must use their resources as efficiently as possible. Historically, economic analyses in oncology have emphasized survival as their clinical end point. Today, both government groups and professional organizations are moving toward making quality of life the clinical end point in determining the economics of chemotherapy. This report evaluates the cost and efficacy of amifostine (Ethyol; Alza Pharmaceuticals, Palo Alto, CA/US Bioscience, West Conshohocken, PA) use in the treatment of advanced ovarian cancer using two pharmacoeconomic analyses. A cost-utility analysis performed in the United States indicated that inclusion of amifostine therapy had both a favorable clinical and cost-utility profile compared with other medical therapies. A second cost-benefit analysis, conducted in Canada, suggested that use of amifostine in patients with advanced ovarian cancer would be cost saving. Amifostine is a novel agent that protects against both chemotherapy- and radiotherapy-induced toxicities, such as nephrotoxicity, neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, peripheral neuropathy, mucositis, and xerostomia. These toxicities are disturbing to both patients and physicians alike. The results of these studies support the use of amifostine as a valuable resource both economically and clinically.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)102-107
Number of pages6
JournalSeminars in Oncology
Issue number2 SUPPL. 7
StatePublished - 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology


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