Sudhof LS, Shainker SA, Einerson BD. Tranexamic acid in the routine treatment of postpartum hemorrhage in the United States: a cost-effectiveness analysis. Am J Obstet Gynecol. Published online June 18, 2019. doi.org/10.1016/j.ajog.2019.06.030.
Postpartum hemorrhage is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the United States. The World Maternal Antifibrinolytic (WOMAN) trial showed that the use of TXA, an antifibrinolytic agent, for PPH decreases hemorrhage-related mortality and laparotomy. Routine use of TXA for PPH has demonstrated cost-effectiveness in low-resource countries, where hemorrhage-related mortality rates are higher than in the United States. This study aimed to determine if routine use of TXA for PPH in the United States also is cost-effective.
Details of the study
Sudhof and colleagues conducted a decision-tree analysis to compare the cost-effectiveness of 3 strategies regarding routine use of TXA for PPH in the United States: no TXA, TXA given at any time, and TXA given within 3 hours of delivery.
Health care system perspective. In the primary analysis, the 3 strategies were evaluated from the perspective of the health care system. Outcomes included cost, number of laparotomies, and maternal deaths from delivery until 6 weeks postpartum. Rates of hemorrhage and related complications, as well as cost assumptions, were derived from multiple US-based studies. The relative risk reduction in death and laparotomy with TXA in the United States was assumed to be similar to that found in the WOMAN trial (19% and 36%, respectively).
Societal perspective. In the secondary analysis, the 3 TXA strategies were evaluated from the societal perspective, comparing quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) and cost per QALY. For both the primary and secondary analyses, sensitivity analyses were performed across a range of values for each input.
Main findings. Tranexamic acid use would be cost saving if the relative risk reduction for maternal death with TXA was greater than approximately 5%, which is significantly lower than that seen in the WOMAN trial (19%). The primary analysis demonstrated that—assuming a 3% rate of PPH—giving TXA to women with PPH would save $11.3 million, prevent 334 laparotomies, and avert 9 maternal deaths annually in the United States. This cost saving nearly tripled if TXA was administered within 3 hours of delivery, with 5 additional maternal deaths prevented.
Secondary analysis incorporating QALYs also showed TXA use to be cost-effective. These findings held through various sensitivity analyses.
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