, Volume 13, Issue 5, pp 589-603
Date: 24 Jun 2011

Cost-effectiveness of lapatinib plus capecitabine in women with HER2+ metastatic breast cancer who have received prior therapy with trastuzumab

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In a phase III trial of women with HER2+ metastatic breast cancer (MBC) previously treated with trastuzumab, an anthracycline, and taxanes (EGF100151), lapatinib plus capecitabine (L + C) improved time to progression (TTP) versus capecitabine monotherapy (C-only). In a trial including HER2+ MBC patients who had received at least one prior course of trastuzumab and no more than one prior course of palliative chemotherapy (GBG 26/BIG 03-05), continued trastuzumab plus capecitabine (T + C) also improved TTP.


An economic model using patient-level data from EGF100151 and published results of GBG 26/BIG 03-05 as well as other literature were used to evaluate the incremental cost per quality-adjusted life-year [QALY] gained with L + C versus C-only and versus T + C in women with HER2+ MBC previously treated with trastuzumab from the UK National Health Service (NHS) perspective.


Expected costs were £28,816 with L + C, £13,985 with C-only and £28,924 with T + C. Corresponding QALYs were 0.927, 0.737 and 0.896. In the base case, L + C was estimated to provide more QALYs at a lower cost compared with T + C; cost per QALY gained was £77,993 with L + C versus C-only. In pairwise probabilistic sensitivity analyses, the probability that L + C is preferred to C-only was 0.03 given a threshold of £30,000. The probability that L + C is preferred to T + C was 0.54 regardless of the threshold.


When compared against capecitabine alone, the addition of lapatinib has a cost-effectiveness ratio exceeding the threshold normally used by NICE. Compared with T + C, L + C is dominant in the base case and approximately equally likely to be cost-effective in probabilistic sensitivity analyses over a wide range of threshold values.

Preliminary results of this study were presented at ECCO 14—the European Cancer Conference Barcelona, Spain, 23–27 September 2007 and the 2008 American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting, Chicago, IL, 1 June 2008.