Capsule enteroscopy is considered the gold standard for evaluating patients with obscure gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding.
The costs of capsule enteroscopy examination, however, make it uncertain whether the clinically relevant diagnostic gain is also associated with cost savings.
Dr Ricardo Marmo and colleagues from Italy evaluated the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio of capsule enteroscopy in patients with obscure gastrointestinal bleeding.
|58% had positive findings with capsule enteroscopy|
|European Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology.|
The team carried out a retrospective study in 9 Italian gastroenterology units from 2003 to 2005.
Data on 369 consecutive patients with obscure gastrointestinal bleeding were collected.
The diagnostic yield of capsule enteroscopy vs other imaging procedures was evaluated as a measure of efficacy.
The team found the values of Diagnosis Related Group 175 were calculated as measures of economic outcomes in the cost analysis.
Obscure and occult gastrointestinal bleeding was recorded in 177 patients with a mean duration of anemia history of 18 months.
Among patients, 61% had had at least 1 hospital admission, 21% at least 2, and 1% of obscure bleeders up to 9 admissions.
Overall, 58% of patients had positive findings with capsule enteroscopy compared with 28% with other imaging procedures.
The team noted that the mean cost of a positive diagnosis with capsule enteroscopy was 2091 Euros.
Other procedures cost 3829 Euros with a mean cost saving of 1738 Euros for a positive diagnosis.
Dr Marmo's team commented, "Capsule enteroscopy is a cost-saving approach in the evaluation of patients with obscure gastrointestinal bleeding."