Societal interest in pharmaco-economic analysis is increasing in Japan. In this study, the cost-effectiveness of low-dose combination therapy with controlled release nifedipine plus candesartan and up-titrated monotherapy with candesartan was estimated, based on the results of the NICE-Combi study. The NICE-Combi study was a double-blind, parallel arm, randomized clinical trial to compare the efficacy of low-dose combination therapy of controlled release nifedipine (20 mg/day) plus candesartan (8 mg/day) vs. up-titrated monotherapy of candesartan (12 mg/day) on blood pressure control in Japanese patients with mild to severe essential hypertension who were not sufficiently controlled by the conventional dose of candesartan (8 mg/day). The incremental cost effectiveness of each cohort during the 8-week randomization period was compared, from the perspective of a third-party payer (i.e., insurers). The average total cost per patient was 29,943 Japanese yen for the combination therapy group and 33,182 Japanese yen for the candesartan monotherapy group, while the rate of achievement of the target blood pressure was significantly higher in the combination therapy group than in the up-titrated monotherapy group. In the combination therapy group, higher efficacy and lower incremental treatment cost (“Dominance”) were observed when compared to the monotherapy group. The sensitivity analyses also supported the results. In conclusion, these results suggest that combination therapy with controlled release nifedipine and low-dose candesartan (8 mg) is “dominant” to up-titrated candesartan monotherapy for the management of essential hypertension. This conclusion was robust to sensitivity analysis.
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Fujikawa, K., Hasebe, N. & Kikuchi, K. Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of Hypertension Treatment: Controlled Release Nifedipine and Candesartan Low-Dose Combination Therapy in Patients with Essential Hypertension —The Nifedipine and Candesartan Combination (NICE-Combi) Study—. Hypertens Res 28, 585–591 (2005). https://doi.org/10.1291/hypres.28.585
- incremental cost-effectiveness analysis
- essential hypertension
- controlled release nifedipine