Costs and Benefits of Different Strategies to Screen for Cervical Cancer in Less-Developed Countries
Bin Yi, Jason King, Jeanne S Mandelblatt*, Khunying Kobchitt Limpahayom, Lynne Gaffikin, Patricia Ringers, Paul D Blumenthal, Pisake Lumbiganon, Suwanna Warakamin, William F Lawrence
Georgetown University School of Midicine, Lombardi Cancer Center, 2233 Wisconsin Ave., NW. Suite 317, Washington, DC 20007.
Background: About 80% of cervical cancers occur in less developed countries. This disproportionate burden of cervical cancer in such countries is due mainly to the lack of well-organized screening programs.  Several cervical cancer screening strategies have been proposed as more cost-effective than cytology screening.  We compared the costs and benefits of different strategies and their effectiveness in saving lives in a less-developed country.    Methods: We used a population-based simulation model to evaluate the incremental societal costs and benefits in Thailand of seven screening techniques, including visual inspection of the cervix after applying acetic acid (VIA), human papillomavirus (HPV) testing, Pap smear, and combinations of screening tests, and examined the discounted costs per year of life saved (LYS).    Results: Compared with no (i.e., not well-organized) screening, all strategies saved lives, at costs ranging from $121 to $6720 per LYS, and reduced mortality, by up to 58%.  Comparing each strategy with the next least expensive alternative, VIA performed at 5-year intervals in women of ages 35-55 with immediate treatment if abnormalities are found was the least expensive option and saved the greatest number of lives, with a cost of $517 per LYS.  HPV screening resulted in similar costs and benefits, if the test cost is $5 and if 90% of women undergo follow-up after and abnormal screen.  Cytology (Pap smear) was a reasonable alternative if sensitivity exceeds 80% and if 90% of women undergo follow-up.  Compared with no screening, use of a combination of Pap smear and HPV testing at 5-year interval in women of ages 20-70 could achieve greater than 90% reduction in cervical cancer mortality at a cost of $1683 per LYS, and VIA could achieve 83% reduction at $524 per LYS. Conclusion: Well-organized screening programs can reduce cervical cancer mortality in less-developed countries at low costs. There cost-effectiveness data can enhance decision-making about optimal policies for a given setting.
Journal of the National Cancer Institute ปี 2545, October ปีที่: 94 ฉบับที่ 19 หน้า 1469-1483