Updated in 9/11/2011 10:54:44 AM      Viewed: 294 times      (Journal Article)
Lancet 345 (8958): 1139-43 (1995)

A cost-effectiveness study of a randomised trial of laparoscopy versus laparotomy for ectopic pregnancy.

D T Gray , J Thorburn , P Lundorff , A Strandell , B Lindblom
We compared the cost-effectiveness of therapeutic laparoscopy and open laparotomy for treatment of laparoscopically diagnosed ectopic pregnancy. Clinical outcomes of ectopic pregnancy treatment were based on results of a randomised trial done between 1987 and 1989 at Sahlgrenska University Hospital (Göteborg, Sweden). We estimated costs for inpatient and follow-up care of ectopic pregnancy by the two methods. Observed resource use (eg, procedure duration) was multiplied by 1992 estimates of resource unit cost (eg, cost per minute of laparoscopy time), based on detailed internal cost accounting data from Huddinge University Hospital. By specified criteria, the initial procedure eliminated trophoblastic activity without major complications in 81% (95% CI: 68-90) of 52 laparoscopy patients, versus 95% (85-99) of 57 laparotomy patients. Residual trophoblast or complications were successfully treated in all remaining patients. Mean simulated costs (standard error) for the overall laparoscopy strategy were 28,058 (1780) Swedish kronor versus 32,699 (1080) kronor for laparotomy (p = 0.03). In the baseline simulation and most sensitivity analyses, laparoscopy produced final outcomes equivalent to those of laparotomy at lower costs. As laparoscopic outcomes improve, this newer approach should become increasingly preferable.
ISSN: 0140-6736