Aims: To assess the real-world healthcare resource utilization (HRU) and costs associated with different proteasome inhibitors (PIs) for the treatment of patients with relapsed and/or refractory multiple myeloma (RRMM) in Germany.
Methods: We conducted a retrospective medical chart review of treatment patterns, outcomes, and HRU for patients with RRMM treated with bortezomib, carfilzomib, or ixazomib in second- or third-line (2L or 3L) therapy in Germany. Data were collected between 1 January 2017 and 30 June 2017. Costs were calculated based on drug prices and unit costs in Germany.
Results: Physicians provided data on 302 patients. Mean monthly total direct costs per patient receiving PI-based therapy were €7,925 and €10,693 for 2L and 3L, respectively, of which approximately 90% was anti-myeloma drug costs. Overall, the highest costs were associated with patients receiving 3L therapy. Regardless of treatment line, costs were higher for patients who had received a stem cell transplant (SCT) in a previous treatment line than for those who had not; the data suggest that this reflects the use of triplet regimens following a SCT. Patients with a complete response (CR) experienced no unplanned hospitalizations during the study period, whereas patients with progressive disease experienced the highest number of unplanned and planned hospitalizations. In 2L therapy, the highest proportion of patients with a CR was observed in those receiving carfilzomib (12% carfilzomib; 4% bortezomib; 0% ixazomib).
Limitations: Patients with missing or incomplete follow-up data were included in the study and were accounted for using monthly cost estimates.
Conclusions: Anti-myeloma drugs were the main contributor to total HRU costs associated with RRMM in Germany. Improved treatment response was associated with lower costs and reduced hospitalizations.