Evaluation of the Cost-Effectiveness of Iron Formulations for the Treatment of Iron Deficiency Anaemia in Patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease in the UK

Clinicoecon Outcomes Res. 2021 Jun 17;13:541-552. doi: 10.2147/CEOR.S306823.eCollection 2021.

Aysegül Aksan 1 2, Ian L P Beales 3, Garth Baxter 4, Antonio Ramirez de Arellano 5, Simona Gavata 6, William J Valentine 7, Barnaby Hunt 7


Author information

  • 1Interdisciplinary Crohn Colitis Centre, Rhein-main, Frankfurt/Main, Germany.
  • 2Institute of Nutritional Science, Justus-Liebig University, Giessen, Germany.
  • 3Department of Gastroenterology, Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, Norwich, UK.
  • 4Vifor Pharma Group, HEOR, London, UK.
  • 5Vifor Pharma Group, HEOR, Glattbrugg, Switzerland.
  • 6Vifor Pharma Group, Market Access, Glattbrugg, Switzerland.
  • 7Ossian Health Economics and Communications, Basel, Switzerland.


Introduction: In patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), iron deficiency anaemia (IDA) can impair quality of life and increase healthcare costs. Treatment options for IDA-associated IBD include oral iron and intravenous iron formulations (such as ferric carboxymaltose [FCM], ferric derisomaltose [FD, previously known as iron isomaltoside 1000], and iron sucrose [IS]). The present analysis compared the cost-effectiveness of FCM versus FD, IS, and oral iron sulfate in terms of additional cost per additional responder in the UK setting.

Methods: Cost-effectiveness was calculated for FCM versus FD, IS, and oral iron individually in terms of the additional cost per additional responder, defined as haemoglobin normalisation or an increase of ≥2 g/dL in haemoglobin levels, in a model developed in Microsoft Excel. Relative efficacy inputs were taken from a previously published network meta-analysis, since there is currently no single head-to-head trial evidence comparing all therapy options. Costs were calculated in 2020 pounds sterling (GBP) capturing the costs of iron preparations, healthcare professional time, and consumables.

Results: The analysis suggested that FCM may be the most effective intervention, with 81% of patients achieving a response. Response rates with FD, IS, and oral iron were 74%, 75%, and 69%, respectively. Total costs with FCM, FD, IS, and oral iron were GBP 296, GBP 312, GBP 503, and GBP 56, respectively. FCM was found to be more effective and less costly than both FD and IS, and therefore was considered dominant. Compared with oral iron, FCM was associated with an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio of GBP 2045 per additional responder.

Conclusions: FCM is likely to be the least costly and most effective IV iron therapy in the UK setting. Compared with oral iron, healthcare payers must decide whether the superior treatment efficacy of FCM is worth the additional cost.


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