Introduction and Background: The cost of the therapeutic management of acromegaly depends on the selection of resources used, surgery and/or pharmacological treatment, by the specialist responsible for treatment, related to the characteristics of the patient and tumour. The objective of this work is to evaluate these costs for an illness that is rare but that is associated with a high morbidity in the context of routine clinical practice. Methods: This was an epidemiological, prospective, naturalistic, multicentre study in Spain, in which 38 endocrinologists participated. Adult patients with acromegaly and a pituitary microadenoma or macroadenoma were included in the study. Patients were assigned, according to first-line treatment, to the following two groups: surgery first-line group (surgery in the 6 months before inclusion or during the follow-up period) and pharmaceutical first-line group (treatment with somatostatin analogues [SAs] for at least 6 months and with or without surgery after starting treatment with SAs). Data were collected during routine visits made during a follow-up period of 2 years. All resources were estimated at 2009 prices (€) and adjusted according to the Spanish consumer price index in 2010. Results: Seventy-four patients were included, the majority of them with macroadenoma (70%). Eighty-eight percent of patients were treated surgically (76% as a first-line treatment), while 12% of patients received only SAs. Treatment with SAs was used at some point in the study by 85% of patients. The mean annual total cost of acromegaly is €9668 per patient (€9223 for the surgery group and €11 054 for the pharmaceutical group). Seventy-one percent of the direct cost of the disease corresponds to treatment with SAs. The cost of a patient treated only with surgery is €2501 on an annual basis, versus €9745 for a patient receiving only pharmacological treatment. In cases where a combination of both types of treatment is required, the annual total cost ranges from €10 866 to €12 364. Conclusion: The annual direct cost per patients of acromegaly in Spain is €9668. Even though surgery is the preferred option for treatment for a great number of patients, SAs must be added to the treatment regimen of the majority of such patients. The costs associated with this treatment are greater than the cost of treatment with SAs alone. © 2012 Adis Data Information BV. All rights reserved.
- cost of illness