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Browsing by Subject "järjestelmällinen kirjallisuuskatsaus"

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  • Teittinen, Panu (2017)
    Psoriasis (Ps) and Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA) are chronic inflammatory diseases that are associated with profoundly impaired quality of life. Psoriasis is incurable and therefore the treatment aims to relieve patient's symptoms and improve the quality of life. Biologics are an efficacious treatment option for moderate-to-severe Ps and PsA but their relatively high costs limit their use. Health care resources are scarce and therefore economic evaluations provide crucial information for decision-makers. The objectives of this study was to determine 1) What is the incremental cost-effectiveness of biologics for moderate-to-severe Ps and PsA, and 2) What is the quality of cost-utility analyzes examining the subject. The theory section of this Master's thesis considers the current treatment alternatives for Ps and PsA and costs relating their use. The main principles and methodologies conducting economic evaluation and systematic review are also discussed in the theory section. The empirical section concerns the previous systematic reviews regarding the cost-effectiveness of biologics for the treatment of moderate-to-severe Ps and PsA, while also addressing the results of this systematic review and the quality of included cost-utility analyzes. 1425 references were found with the systematic literature search and 17 of them were included in this study. Eight articles concerned the cost-effectiveness of biologics for the treatment of Ps and nine articles for the treatment of PsA. All of the included studies used cost-utility modelling approach. Based on the results of this systematic review, biologics are cost-effective compared standard care for the treatment of severe Ps. Biologics are also cost-effective compared to the standard care for the treatment of moderate-to-severe PsA. However, future studies, independent of influence of pharmaceutical industry, are needed to confirm these results. The quality of cost-utility analyzes included in this study varied substantially. The main shortcomings related to reporting of the data included, modelling methodologies and the arguments for choosing the treatments compared. The strengths of this study are a comprehensive and systematic literature search, careful evaluation of included data and the transparency of methodologies. The main weaknesses relate to generalizability of the results and the possibility of biases. This study updates the current knowledge of cost-effectiveness of biologics for Ps and PsA, while providing a good foundation for the future studies to be conducted.
  • Joensuu, Jaana (2013)
    Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic autoimmune disease with prevalence of 0.8% among Finnish adult population. Consequent medical treatment, joint replacement surgery and productivity losses lead to significant expenses for society. While biological treatments for RA are costly, they can improve patients' quality of life and work participation. Economic evaluations provide information on the benefits and costs of these expensive treatments to aid optimal utilization of limited healthcare resources. This master`s thesis comprises the description of the Finnish Current Care Guidelines for RA, the cost of biological treatments and the principles of economic evaluations and health technology assessment. A systematic literature review was performed to identify existing studies examining the cost-effectiveness of biological treatments for RA. Of the 4890 references found with the literature search, 38 original studies and 9 previous systematic reviews were included in the current systematic literature review. Details of the methods as well as information on treatments, costs, benefits and incremental cost-effectiveness were extracted. Quality of the original studies was evaluated using quality assessment tools. Ninety percent (34/38) of the original studies used cost-utility modeling approach. Quality of life estimates were derived from RA specific health assessment questionnaire in a majority of the studies. Based on the current systematic literature review, the evidence on the cost-effectiveness of biological treatments is inconsistent. The incremental cost-effectiveness of the tumor necrosis factor (TNF) blockers was 13 500-772 000 €/ quality adjusted life year (QALY) in comparison to conventional disease modifying anti rheumatic drugs (DMARD) among patients without previous treatment with DMARDs. Several studies reported incremental cost-effectiveness ratios over 100 000 €/QALY in this population. Among patients with insufficient response to DMARDs, TNF blockers provided incremental cost-effectiveness ratios between 6 700 and 317 000 €/QALY. In most studies Rituximab was found to be a cost-effective alternative in contrast to other treatments among patients with insufficient response to TNF blockers. Biological treatments are not cost-effective among patients naïve to conventional DMARDs. Meanwhile, in patients with previous DMARD failure TNF-blockers might be cost-effective. The evidence on the cost effectiveness of biological treatments supports Finnish Current Care Guidelines. The quality assessment of the included studies revealed several sources of bias, consequently reducing the validity of the studies. Only a few of the conference abstracts in current subject has been published later as an article indicating existence of reporting bias. This study has several strengths. First, a comprehensive literature search was performed. Second, the quality of included studies was carefully evaluated. Finally, the methods and reporting are transparent. Weakness of the current study is one person extracting data and assessing the quality of the studies, which may reduce the reliability of this study. This systematic literature review is a basis for future studies examining cost-effectiveness of biological treatments in Finnish healthcare system.
  • Mäkinen, Arttu (2018)
    This is a systematic review aiming to investigate the efficacy, effectiveness, and safety of biosimilars in the treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases. Biosimilar drugs used to treat inflammatory bowel diseases include biosimilar infliximab and biosimilar adalimumab. Biosimilar infliximab has been authorized by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in 2013 and by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2016. Biosimilar adalimumab has been authorized by EMA and FDA in 2017 and, at the time the literary search for this systematic review was conducted no studies were found regarding the treatment of adalimumab biosimilar for inflammatory bowel diseases. To acquire marketing authorization for biosimilars, it must be proven that the biosimilar is biologically similar to the original medicinal product. Bioequivalence is demonstrated through physicochemical trials and clinical trials. However, clinical trials do not have to be performed with all of the indications for which the original medical product is registered. After proving bioequivalence with one or more indication it is possible to extrapolate the biosimilar to be used in all of the original medical products indications. This has raised the question of whether biosimilars are really comparable to the originator in indications for which no clinical trials have been conducted. This systematic review was implemented using the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews and Interventions. Systematic literature searches were made in Cochrane, Medline (Ovid®), PubMed and Scopus databases on 12.05.2017. 14 observational studies, one systematic review and a randomized clinical trial that met the inclusion criteria were included in the systematic review. The quality of the publications was evaluated using the STROBE-, NOS- and CONSORT-checklists and information regarding the efficacy, effectiveness and safety of biosimilars was extracted. CD-patients receiving tumor necrosis factor alpha inhibitors for the first time, the clinical response was achieved in 50.0 % to 97.2 % of patients depending on patient population and the duration of treatment. Similarly, for UC-patients, the clinical response was achieved in 62.2 % to 100.0 %. The clinical remission was achieved among 28.9 % to 84.4 % of CD-patients and among 28.9 % to 84.4 % of UC-patients, depending on patient population and treatment follow-up. After the switch from original infliximab to biosimilar, the proportion of patients in clinical remission during follow-up ranged from 62.3 % to 100.0 % in CD-patients and from 45.5 % to 100.0 % in UC-patients. Clinical remission was sustained throughout the whole follow-up in 70 % to 100 % of CD-patients and 66.7 % to 92.0 % of UC-patients. The incidence of adverse events leading to the discontinuation of drug treatment was between 0.0 % and 25.0 %, and the incidence of all adverse events ranged from 0.0 % to 93.6 % in CD- and UC-patients. Biosimilar infliximab seems to be comparable to the original product regarding the efficacy, effectiveness and safety. This result is supported by the systematic literature review published earlier. Conducting a meta-analysis of the information contained in this systematic literature review could have led to a more final decision considering efficacy, effectiveness and safety of biosimilar-infliximab in the treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases.
  • Vainio, Sanna (2019)
    Despite the long history of skin grafting, there is no standardized treatment for split-thickness skin graft donor sites. These sites cause a notable amount of pain and discomfort to the patients and open wounds also introduce a risk for infection. There is an extensive need for treatment options promoting the fastest and least painful healing possible while also being infection-free. The treatment of split-thickness skin graft donor sites is constantly studied and there is plenty of scientific literature available about this topic. In the theory section of this Master’s thesis, the structure of skin, the process of wound healing, skin grafting surgery and wound care products for split-thickness skin graft donor sites are briefly introduced. Additionally, the method of systematic review is described. In the empirical section, a systematic review is performed to compare animal- and non-animal-based wound care products in the treatment of split skin graft donor sites. The methodological quality of the included studies is reviewed. In the literature search, 3552 references were found. In this systematic review a total of 23 articles were included comprising of 21 comparative clinical studies and two previous literature reviews. Of the original studies, 20 reviewed healing, 14 infection and 17 pain of the split-thickness skin graft donor sites. Based on the results of the systematic review, animal-based wound care products might promote healing and reduce pain experienced by patients in the treatment of split-thickness skin graft donor sites when compared with non-animal-based wound care products. The results concerning infection were inconsistent. Generally, the reporting of the clinical original studies was not comprehensive enough for proper evaluation of methodological quality. Some defects, mostly in the blinding of the patients, study personnel and the assessors of outcomes, were also found. Moreover, the studies were heterogeneous in their definitions and measuring of the reported outcomes. Therefore, there is substantial uncertainty in the results of this systematic review. The systematic and transparent way of conducting the literature search, the review of the methodological quality and the reporting of the outcomes can be considered as a strength of this thesis. The main weakness is, that only one person performed the critical steps of this study, which might increase the risk of bias and reduce the repeatability of the study.
  • Viljemaa, Kati (2017)
    The economic burden of adverse events (AEs) is substantial and in direct relation to current increasing drug utilisation. According to previous research, the annual cost of AEs in the U.S. may be as high as 22.9 billion euros. In Europe AEs are considered to contribute to 3.6 percent of hospital admissions, have an impact on 10 percent of inpatients during their hospital admission and are responsible for less than 0.5 percent of inpatient deaths. AEs thus clearly constitute a major clinical issue. Fluoroquinolones have been in clinical use since the 1980s and are globally among the most consumed antimicrobials. Fluoroquinolones are generally well tolerated antimicrobials. The most common AEs are mild and reversible, such as diarrhea, nausea and headaches. Nevertheless, fluoroquinolones are also associated with more serious AEs, including Clostridium difficile associated diarrhea (CDAD), rate-corrected electrocardiographic prolonged QT interval, tendinitis and tendon rupture, dysglycemia, hepatic toxicity, phototoxicity, acute renal failure and serious AEs involving the central nervous system, such as seizures. Health service use and costs specifically associated with fluoroquinolone-related AEs have not been evaluated previously. The theory section of this Marter's thesis considers adverse events and fluoroquinolones. The main principles of conducting a systematic review are also discussed. The empirical section is a systematic review. The aim of this study is to identify health care use and costs associated with ciprofloxacin, levofloxacin, moxifloxacin, norfloxacin and ofloxacin -related AEs. A literature search covering Medline, SCOPUS, Cinahl, Web of Science and Cochrane Library was performed in April 2017. Two independent reviewers systematically extracted the data and assessed the quality of the included studies. All costs were converted to 2016 euro in order to improve comparability. Of the 5,687 references found in the literature search, 19 observational studies, of which 5 were case-controlled, fulfilled the inclusion criteria. Hospitalization was an AE-related health care use outcome in 17 studies. Length of stay associated with AEs varied between <5 - 45 days. The estimated cost of an AE episode ranged between 140 and 18,252 €. CDAD was associated with the longest stays in hospital. However, a mere 10 studies reported AE-related length of stays and only 5 evaluated costs associated with AEs. Although rare, in particular serious fluoroquinolone-related AEs can have substantial economic implications, in addition to imposing potentially devastating health complications for patients. Further measures are required to prevent and reduce health service use and costs associated with fluoroquinolone-related AEs. Equally, better-quality reporting and additional published data on health service use and costs associated with AEs are essential. The strengths of this study are a comprehensive and systematic literature search and transparency of methodologies and reporting. The main weakness is the generalizability of the results.
  • Aaltonen, Kalle (2010)
    Rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory autoimmune disease with prevalence of 0,8 per cent of Finnish people. Rheumatoid arthritis may lead to immobility and premature death. Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis includes disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs and surgery. TNF-blockers are efficacious new drugs, which halt the progression of joint destruction caused by inflammation. The first TNF-blocker to receive permission of the national agency for medicines was Infliximab in 1999. Since then Infliximab has been followed by Etanercept, Adalimumab, Golimumab and Certolizumab. TNF-blockers have been found to be more efficacious than placebo in both clinical trials and register studies. In addition they are considered to be safe enough for clinical use despite the increased risk for tuberculosis and certain cancers. The number of patients annually treated with TNF-blockers in Finland increased threefold between 2004 and 2008. In 2008 the medication costs per patient were 11 669€ for Etanercept and 13 074€ for adalimumab. Systematic literature review is a study, which searches, identifies and combines individual studies. Usually Systematic reviews include a meta-analysis, which uses statistical methods to combine the results of the studies. Meta-analysis aims for increasing power and generalisibility of the studies and reducing the potential bias in individual studies. In order not to introduce bias by itself the systematic review must be done following the methods approved by the scientific community. In addition the process must be documented in detail. Following a predefined search strategy the systematic literature search found 5308 references. After a process involving the evaluation of the patients, intervention, control, outcomes, study design and the risk of bias 27 studies were selected to be included in the systematic review and meta-analysis. Of the included studies, nine had adalimumab, six had etanercept, five had infliximab, four had golimumab and three certolizumab as intervention. TNF-blocker was used either alone or in combination with methotrexate whereas control was either placebo or methotrexate. Altogether, there were 11 533 patients in the intervention group and 9027 in the control group. The results of the meta-analysis indicate reveal that the patients treated with TNF-blockers are twice as likely to reach a 20 % increase on ACR criteria compared to control patients. The likelihood to reach improvements of 50 and 70 % was 3 and 3.5 times higher, respectively. There were no statistically significant differences in efficacy between individual TNFblockers. Increasing the dosage of a TNF-blocker did not increase efficacy. However, combination of TNF-blocker and methotrexate was superior to monotreatment of TNF-blocker without increasing the likelihood of discontinuation of treatment. There were no statistically significant differences between the efficacy of TNF-blocker monotherapy and methotrexate. Adalimumab, infliximab and certolizumab lead more often to treatment discontinuation compared to etanercept and golimumab, which do not differ from control. This systematic review probably found all studies that investigated the efficacy of TNF-blockers in a randomized controlled trial. Study selection and evaluation were based on widely accepted methods. This study has two weaknesses. Firstly, literature search and study selection and evaluation were done only by a single researcher. Secondly, unpublished studies and study results were not actively obtained outside electronic databases.
  • Pakarinen, Tiina (2014)
    Clinical pharmacy is defined as a service which a pharmacist provides for example to a ward or a medical center. In Finland clinical pharmacy (or ward pharmacy) was started in the 1980s but it hasn't expanded widely until at the end of the 2010s. Need for cost-effectiveness research has been under discussion because of increasing health care costs. This kind of research helps to choose the most effective services. Naturally also clinical pharmacy is under effectiveness consideration. A systematic review was conducted considering the cost-effectiveness research of clinical pharmacy. The aim of this review was to find clinical pharmacy interventions which have been proven costeffective. Literature research found 7 articles. Three of these studied pharmacokinetic patient surveillance and in the rest four articles pharmacist worked as a part of multidisciplinary team. In six studies the cost savings were greater than the costs. The other part of this study was about clinical pharmacy in the hospital district of Helsinki and Uusimaa (HUS). Data was collected from Helsinki University Central Hospital (HUCH) wards which had had clinical pharmacy services during the years 2009-2012. Collected data included clinical pharmacy costs and amount of work gained with those costs, drug consumption, drug waste amounts, amounts of drugs returned to HUS-pharmacy and amounts of HaiPro-reports. Collected data was presented as a time series. The costs of clinical pharmacy had followed the trend of other health care costs during 2009-2012. Wards with clinical pharmacy had somewhat larger amount of drug waste than the other wards. Amounts of drugs returned to the pharmacy were greater in the wards with clinical pharmacy. The amount of HaiPro-reports grew by a factor of 15 from 2009 to 2012. Especially amounts of drug administration errors and errors in writing down prescriptions were greater in clinical pharmacy wards. The data in this thesis describes only a small part of clinical pharmacists' work in the HUCH area. Making final conclusions about the cost-effectiveness of clinical pharmacy isn't possible with this data. The systematic review can give ideas to improve clinical pharmacy in HUS in a more cost-effective direction.
  • Lipsanen, Tuomas (2010)
    Medication review is relatively new intervention in Finland that potentially promotes safe and rational use of medicines. During the recent years, the effectiveness of different kind of medication review procedures has been evaluated in many countries. The results considering the cost-effectiveness have varied and conclusions have been difficult to make. Because of the limited resources, the funders and decisionmakers need evidence-based effectiveness data to get the best possible value for the money spent in health care. The aim of the study was to gather, analyze and summarize the published data of costeffectiveness of the medication review by means of a systematic review. The aim was also to represent the medication review as a concept, procedure and study objective. This study was conducted as an analysis of study methods applied in published studies on cost-effectiveness of medication review procedures. In total, 947 references were found using a systematic literature search covering three electronic databases (Medline, CRD and IPA). Most of the references were excluded based on titles and abstracts, and 85 full-text articles were evaluated. After the duplicates were removed, 11 articles met the requested inclusion criteria and were entered to the study. There was a lot of variation between selected articles. In five articles the description of the medication review was not detailed or the intervention was not equal to the expected content level. Also the outcomes measures used in the studies varied. Most studies measured the use of medicines or the number of drug-related problems in different ways. Quality of life was applied as an outcome measure only in five studies and none of the studies were able to show statistically significant differences between intervention and control groups. Mortality was measured in four studies. In most studies the definition and calculation of the costs was limited and inadequate for proper economic evaluation. It was also common that only the direct drug costs from patient's perspective were calculated. The cost of pharmacist's working hours was taken into account in five studies. The incremental analysis was performed only in one study which also got high quality scores compared to all other studies. On the whole the economic evaluations in the selected studies were of low quality and performed in simple a way.
  • Järvinen, Nina (2016)
    Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women, about 25 % of all cancers in women. 15 - 20 % of them are HER2 positive. HER2 is a transmembrane protein receptor with tyrosine kinase activity. When the overexpressed receptor is activated it turns on a cascade which results to activation of genes coding for for the growth of the cancer cells. Drugs against HER2 protein have significantly improved the survival of patients with HER2 positive breast cancer. In this systematic review the epidemiology, diagnostics and the principles of treatment is reviewed with focus on the treatment of HER2 positive breast cancer and anti-HER2 medications. Endpoints of clinical trials and handling the data are also reviewed. The aim of this study is to collect data of lapatinib, pertuzumab and trastuzumab emtansine in randomized clinical trials studying progression free survival, overall survival and adverse effects of patients with metastatic HER2 positive breast cancer. As a result of the literature search 22 whole text articles were found. There were 14 of randomized clinical trials, 2 of previous systematic reviews and 6 of meta-analysis. The facts and results of the selected studies were collected in tables. The quality of the studies was evaluated with CONSORT and PRISMA guidance. Lapaninib is used mainly for treatment of patients with resistanse to trastuzumab. Lapatinib improves the progression free survival and overall survival but the effect has not been as goog as expected. Lapatinib is better than chemotherapy but worse than trastuzumab in the treatment of metastatic HER2 positive breast cancer. Combinaition therapy is better than none of these alone. Lapatinib is a small molecule tyrosine kinase inhibitor. Pertuzumab and trastuzumab emtansine are monoclonal antibodies targeting HER2 receptor. In trastuzumab emtansine there is also a cytotoxic drug which is delivered into the cancer cell. Pertuzumab is effective in the treatment of metastatic HER2 positive breast cancer and it improves the survival also after treatment with trastuzumab. Pertuzumab is now approved also as neoadjuvant. Promising results has been published with trastuzmab emtansine in the treatment of heavily medicated patients with progressive disease. Adverse effects were abundant but usually manageable and reversible. The quality of the studies was mainly good. Some limitations were noticed, especially in reporting methods. Cancer therapy with targeted medication improves the effect of the treatment and decrease systemic adverse effects. It seems that the use of lapatinib is going to be mostly complementary when more promising pertuzumab and trastuzumab emtansine turned up to be more effective in the treatment of metastatic HER2 positive breast cancer. In the future there should be more clinical experience with the use of lapatinib, pertuzumab and trastuzumab emtansine. That would guarantee a cancer patient the most effective treatment, hopefully at the early stage of cancer.
  • Huttu, Martta (2016)
    In the United States pharmacists have prescribed medicines and managed patient's drug therapy since the 1970s, and in the United Kingdom pharmacists have been authorization to prescribe medications since 2003. The discussion about the right of Masters of Science in Pharmacy will be renewed prescriptions during the last decade in Finland but few Finnish studies have been published from the subject. In the document Medicines Policy 2020 published by Ministry of Social Affairs and Health states that by prescribing should be used cost-effective modes of operation. The knowledge about pharmacist prescribing benefits and costs, and also prescribing practice in Finland, is needed to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of pharmacists' authorization to prescribe and to support the decision-making concerning pharmacist prescribing. The aim of this master's thesis is to gather all existing knowledge about the economic and other effects of pharmacist prescribing using a systematic literature review method. The aim of theoretical part of this master's thesis is to explain the Finnish prescribing, the participation of pharmacists in drug therapy management in Finland and internationally pharmacist prescribing. The empirical part of this master's thesis is also to assess the quality of the studies of pharmacist prescribing benefits and costs using quality assessment checklists. In addition, this thesis describes the principles of the cost and benefit analyses, economic evaluations and systematic literature reviews. As a result of the literature search were found 1825 references. Based on the inclusion and exclusion criteria, 17 studies were selected to include in the systematic review. Of these studies three were economic assessments, 8 randomized controlled trials and 6 observational studies. The quality of these studies was assessed using four quality assessment checklists. On the basis of a systematic literature review pharmacist prescribing has been studied in the treatment of type 2 diabetes, hypertension, dyslipidemia, anticoagulation, chronic pain, emergency contraception and minor ailments and renewal of long-term medicines. Pharmacists reduced blood pressure by providing follow-up care with prescribing compared with the usual care, but not compared with the case management, which does not include prescribing. In addition, the follow-up care was to improve the treatment results of type II diabetes. The results obtained in the care of dyslipidemia were partly unclear. In the clinic follow-up care with prescribing could be reduced LDL-cholesterol, but not the risk of cardiovascular disease compared with the control group. In the pharmacy follow-up care had no effect on the treatment of patients with LDL-cholesterol compared with the control group. In addition, pharmacist prescribing improved how well patients stayed within INR target range. Pharmacist medication review with pharmacist prescribing achieved in the care of chronic pain patients differed few from the results of pharmacist medication review with feedback for a general practitioner. Pharmacist prescribing could reduce errors in inpatient medication compared with usual care. Much uncertainty is connected to the results of the study. The limited amount of studies, heterogeneity of the studies and methodological quality make the evaluation of real effects more difficult. The included studies of pharmacist prescribing were so heterogeneous. In addition treated disease, assessed benefits and scope of working environment were varied in included studies. Pharmacist prescribing was often studied as part of other care or pharmaceutical service, such as chronic disease management or medication review. The quality assessment of the included studies revealed several sources of bias. The available research information is the insufficient reliable evaluation of economic and other effects of pharmacist prescribing and the need for the further research is big.
  • Kanerva, Meeri (2019)
    Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women world wide and it´s incidence is constantly growing. The prognosis of local breast cancer is good and patients with metastatic breast cancer are living longer with their disease. The growing survivorship and population of chronically ill breast cancer patients has made quality of life one of the most important aspects in the treatment of breast cancer. Cytotoxic chemotherapy is a widely used treatment for breast cancer. Chemotherapy can cause difficult adverse events, which can affect the patients’ quality of life. Chemotherapy can also relieve the symptoms caused by cancer when used to treat metastatic breast cancer. The aim of this systematic review was to collect the currently available literature about breast cancer patients´ health related quality of life as comprehensively as possible, review the quality of the literature and the effects of chemotherapy on breast cancer patients ‘quality of life. The literature search produced 1666 references. According to the inclusion and exclusion criteria, 107 full text articles were accepted to the final systematic review, 53 of which reported the health related quality of life during adjuvant treatment of breast cancer, and 51 of which reported it during the treatment of advanced or metastatic breast cancer. In addition 3 previous systematic reviews were found. The basic information about the articles was extracted into a table. Articles were heterogeneous regarding their study settings, used quality of life instruments and reporting. Most studies used a disease specific quality of life instrument. The collected literature gave a strong indication of quality of life worsening during adjuvant chemotherapy of breast cancer. This observation was further supported by the previous systematic reviews. Most of the studies reporting the quality of life during chemotherapy for metastatic breast cancer, reported less than clinically important changes during the treatment. A few studies reported clinically important worsening or improvement in quality of life. 11 studies, which were made during or after 21: st century, which reported numerical data from quality of life, which reported predominantly quality of life and which had sample size of at least 100 patients in baseline, were accepted to further assessment of quality of the studies and closer observation. The quality of the studies was assessed with STROBE and CONSORT checklists. The quality of studies was heterogeneous as the studies fulfilled 44.8 % to 86.1 % of the scoring items. Only one randomized controlled trial reported quality of life as their primary end point. The data from these studies supported the previous observation of quality of life worsening during adjuvant chemotherapy of breast cancer. The effect of chemotherapy during metastatic breast cancer on quality of life was not unambiguous. Both clinically meaningful worsening and improvement of quality of life was reported. Breast cancer patients´ health related quality of life has been assessed in multiple publications, but the existing literature is heterogeneous and it´s use in decision making and economic evaluation is not easily feasible. Breast cancer patients´ health related quality of life worsened during adjuvant chemotherapy. Significant improvement in breast cancer patients´ health related quality of life was not observed during chemotherapy for metastatic breast cancer.
  • Hakoinen, Suvi (2014)
    Various cardiovascular diseases cause a significant portion of the direct healthcare costs. For this reason it is important to develop effective treatment strategies. In the treatment of heart failure maintaining healthy lifestyle is an important issue in addition to medical treatment. The aim of this study is to find out whether multidisciplinary interventions in the treatment of heart failure have had better patient outcomes and/or cost savings compared to the standard care and has a certain intervention method proved itself to be more effective than another. The study focuses on the published material in the last ten years, which is compared with prior systematic review about the same topic. The study was conducted as a systematic review. The literature search was performed on Medline (Ovid), CINAHL and Scopus databases. MeSH-terms and other keywords were used in the search. Search was limited to English-language studies. The article selection was made after 06.01.2004 published studies based on the inclusion and exclusion criteria. A quality assessment was made to the selected articles. Only valid articles exceeding 60 % of the maximum points were selected to this review. Literature search found 848 references, of which quality assessment was carried out for 17 articles. 12 articles were selected to this review. Based on statistical significance mortality rate was reduced only rarely. There were lots of heterogeneity in the results for reducing hospitalizations or improving the quality of life. Hospital or clinic-based interventions seemed to be slightly more effective than other intervention methods. There have been no major changes in the intervention methods, only the methods using mailed materials have been left out. Also the outcomes used are similar to those in the past, although validated instruments in different areas of determining the effectiveness have not been developed. This study found no clear evidence about the effectiveness of the treatment programs. Hospital or clinic-based interventions might be more effective than other intervention methods. There is a lot of research about the issue, but high-quality cost-effectiveness studies are lagging. The results from different studies are hard to integrate because the ways to measure vary. The effectiveness of the intervention depends on many factors, and the sheer increase in the knowledge does not seem to be crucial. For assessing the profitability of multidisciplinary interventions there is a need for a high-quality research about the cost-effectiveness of the treatment programs.
  • Konttinen, Riikka (2017)
    Hepatitis C virus disease is transmitted through blood. Chronic hepatitis C causes liver damages such as liver fibrosis, liver cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. It is estimated that there are approximately 20 000 - 30 000 patients infected with hepatitis C virus in Finland. For many years pegylated interferon and ribavirin has been standard of care. However standard of care causes side effects and an adequate treatment response can't be achieved with it. There have been effective direct-acting antivirals available on market which are directed against structural proteins and enzymes of the virus from 2014 onward. These second generation direct-acting antivirals are effective, safe and well tolerated. The only disadvantage is the high price of these medicines which restricts them for severe liver damage patients. More information about cost-effectiveness of second generation direct-acting antivirals is needed to support the decision making. The aim of this master thesis is to describe current care, guidelines, and costs of hepatitis C in Finland. Thesis also describes the principles of economic evaluation and systematic literature review. The purpose of the thesis is to assess cost-effectiveness of second generation direct-acting antivirals versus standard of care in treating of hepatitis C by means of systematic literature review and evaluate the quality of cost-effectiveness analyses. Previously published studies were used to analyze the cost-effectiveness of second generation direct-acting antivirals. In total of 435 references were found through systematic literature search. In addition, two studies were found from the bibliographies of already included studies. Altogether 26 studies were included in the systematic review of which 25 were original studies and one was previously published systematic literature review. The most relevant data of the studies was gathered and analyzed. The quality of the studies was assessed by using three checklists. It is difficult to make conclusions about cost-effectiveness of second generation direct-acting antivirals based on previously published reviews because only one review was found through systematic literature search. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) of second generation direct-acting antivirals varied between dominance and 1 135 655 € /QALY compared to standard of care. When compared to another second generation direct-acting antiviral, ICER of second generation direct-acting antivirals varied between dominance and 65 281 € /QALY. It was also analyzed how stage of liver damage affects the incremental costeffectiveness of second generation direct-acting antivirals. The ICER of second generation direct-acting antivirals was between 299 € - 85 195 € /QALY when treating patients with cirrhosis. When treating non-cirrhotic patients, the ICER of second generation direct-acting antivirals was between 2182 € - 177 679 € /QALY.The connection between funder of the study and the ICER of second generation direct-acting antivirals was also analyzed. The ICER was 1717 € - 86 056 € /QALY in studies funded by pharmaceutical company. The ICER was 299 € - 1 135 655 € /QALY in studies funded by other party. Based on the results of the thesis second generation direct-acting antivirals might be cost-effective compared to current standard of care in treating hepatitis C. The cost-effectiveness ratio of second generation direct-acting antivirals is lower in cirrhotic patients than in non-cirrhotic patients. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio is lower when pharmaceutical company funds a study. The quality of the cost-effectiveness analyses included in the thesis varied greatly which makes it difficult to draw conclusions and interpretate the results. This study has several strengths. First, literature search was conducted systematically and transparently. Second, quality of the reviewed studies included was assessed by care. Finally, reporting of the results is transparent and repeatable. The study has also some limitations. Selection of the reviewed studies, data extraction and quality assessment of the studies was conducted by one person which may increase the possibility of human error.