Background The benefit of endovascular thrombectomy (EVT) in stroke patients with large-vessel occlusion (LVO) depends on the degree of recanalization achieved. We aimed to determine the health outcomes and cost implications of achieving TICI 2b vs TICI 3 reperfusion in acute stroke patients with LVO.
Methods A decision-analytic study was performed with Markov modeling to estimate the lifetime quality-adjusted life years (QALY) of EVT-treated patients, and costs based on the degree of reperfusion achieved. The study was performed with a societal perspective in the United States' setting. The base case calculations were performed in three age groups: 55-, 65-, and 75-year-old patients.
Results Within 90 days, achieving TICI 3 resulted in a cost saving of $3676 per patient and health benefit of 11 days in perfect health as compared with TICI 2b. In the long term, for the three age groups, achieving TICI 3 resulted in cost savings of $46,498, $25,832, and $15 719 respectively, and health benefits of 2.14 QALYs, 1.71 QALYs, and 1.23 QALYs. Every 1% increase in TICI 3 in 55-year-old patients nationwide resulted in a cost saving of $3.4 million and a health benefit of 156 QALYs. Among 65-year-old patients, the corresponding cost savings and health benefit were $1.9 million and 125 QALYs.
Conclusion There are substantial cost and health implications in achieving complete vs incomplete reperfusion after EVT. Our study provides a framework to assess the cost-benefit analysis of emerging diagnostic and therapeutic techniques that might improve patient selection, and increase the chances of achieving complete reperfusion.
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