Medical care costs of Paget's disease of bone in a privately insured population
INTRODUCTION: Medical care costs are difficult to calculate in diseases such as Paget's disease because they have low detection rates and a wide range of clinical manifestations that commonly occur in aging patient populations.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Using 2001-2002 MarketScan Research databases, this study linked medical claims, prescription records, and encounter data on 2.8 million active and retired employees to create a longitudinal panel with 24 months of observation. Patients with Paget's disease were identified by ICD-9 code 731.0. Matched controls (MC) were identified through an exact match procedure using gender, age, and predicted Medicare costs estimated with a risk adjuster. Diagnostic and expenditure records were extracted for the sample and prevalence rates calculated for 20 conditions with well-documented associations to Paget's disease. Comorbidities and health care costs of Paget's disease patients were compared to those of the MCs, and the differences tested using Chi-square and t tests.
RESULTS: Our study identified 244 matched pairs. The average age was 72.7 years; 50.8% were female. Significantly higher comorbidities (P < 0.05) were detected in Paget's disease patients relative to MCs for: pathological fractures (4.9% vs. 0.4%), heart murmurs (3.3% vs. 0.4%), low back pain (19.7% vs. 8.6%), spinal stenosis (16.4% vs. 9.8%), and hearing loss (13.5% vs. 5.7%), respectively. Biannual per patient outpatient costs were significantly higher in Paget's disease patients (Paget's disease $9301 vs. MC $6339, P < 0.05), especially for services associated with physician visits and diagnostic tests. Prescription costs for antiresportive agents and analgesics were also higher (Paget's disease $1115 vs. MC $507, P < 0.05). Inpatient costs (Paget's disease $16,144 vs. MC $21,480) were comparable.
CONCLUSION: This study is the first to describe the excessive costs of Paget's disease, based on known patterns of disease expression, evaluation, and treatment.
Becky A. Briesacher, Denise Orwig, Margaret Seton, Mohamed Omar, and Kristijan H. Kahler. "Medical care costs of Paget's disease of bone in a privately insured population" Bone 38.5 (2006).
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/becky_briesacher/13