Cost-effectiveness of neoadjuvant chemotherapy before radical cystectomy for muscle-invasive bladder cancer

Scott M. Stevenson, Matthew R. Danzig, Rashed A. Ghandour, Christopher M. Deibert, G. Joel Decastro, Mitchell C. Benson, James M. McKiernan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Objectives: To determine the costs of treatment and the duration of survival, adjusted for quality of life, for patients with muscle-invasive bladder cancer treated with immediate radical cystectomy (RC) or with neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) with intent for subsequent RC. Methods and materials: A retrospective review of our institutional review board-approved database identified patients with muscle-invasive bladder cancer treated at our institution from 2004 to 2011. Patients were divided into those receiving RC alone and those receiving NAC before planned RC. Patients who refused RC following NAC were included in an intention-to-treat analysis. Survival duration was converted to quality-adjusted life years (QALYs), and costs of treatment per QALY were determined. Results: A total of 119 patients (65.4%) received RC alone and 63 (34.6%) received NAC, 38 of whom proceeded to cystectomy as planned. Mean total costs were $42,890 and $52,429 for RC and NAC, respectively (P = 0.005). The 5-year overall survival was 31.7% and 42.5% for the RC-only group and the NAC group, respectively (P = 0.034). The 5-year overall survival measured in QALYs was 21.9% and 42.9% for the RC-only and the NAC groups, respectively (P = 0.021). The increased cost for NAC was $5,840 per additional life year gained (95% CI: $1,772-$9,909) and $6,187 per additional QALY gained (95% CI: $1,877-$10,498). Conclusions: The use of NAC is associated with a significant increase in quality-adjusted survival. The additional cost per QALY gained is approximately $6,000. The cost-utility analysis of NAC compares favorably with other cancer-specific therapies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1172-1177
Number of pages6
JournalUrologic Oncology: Seminars and Original Investigations
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Bladder cancer
  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Cystectomy
  • Neoadjuvant therapy
  • Quality of life

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Urology


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