eISSN: 1897-4317
ISSN: 1895-5770
Gastroenterology Review/Przegląd Gastroenterologiczny
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www.egastroenterologia.pl
SCImago Journal & Country Rank
1/2018
vol. 13
 
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Relationship between physician-based assessment of disease activity, quality of life, and costs of ulcerative colitis in Poland

Paweł Kawalec, Ewa Stawowczyk

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Introduction
Ulcerative colitis (UC) is an idiopathic inflammatory bowel disorder, which requires lifelong treatment. It generates substantial direct and indirect costs, and significantly affects the quality of life, especially in the active state of the disease.

Aim
To evaluate the direct and indirect costs of UC as well as to assess disease activity and quality of life reported by patients with UC in Polish settings.

Material and methods
A questionnaire, cross-sectional study among UC patients as well as physicians involved in the therapy of the patients was conducted. The Clinical Activity Index (CAI) was used to assess disease activity, and the WPAI questionnaire to assess productivity loss. The quality of life was presented as utility calculated using the EQ-5D-3L questionnaire. Indirect costs included absenteeism, presenteeism, and informal care were assessed with the Human Capital Approach and expressed in euros (€). The productivity loss among informal caregivers was valuated with the average wage in Poland. Correlations were presented using the Spearman’s coefficient, and the between-group difference was assessed with Mann-Whitney U-test.

Results
One hundred and forty-seven patients participated in the study, including 95 working persons. Mean cost of absenteeism and presenteeism was €1615.2 (95% CI: 669.5–2561.0) and €3684.4 (95% CI: 2367.8–5001.1), respectively, per year per patient with a disease in remission. The mean yearly cost of productivity loss due to informal care was estimated to be €256.6 (range: 0.0–532.6). The corresponding values for patients with active disease were: €8,913.3 (95% CI: 6223.3–11,603.3), €4325.1 (95% CI: 2282.4–6367.8), and €2396.1 (95% CI: 402.0–4390.3). The between-group difference in total indirect costs, cost of absenteeism, and cost of informal care was statistically significant (p < 0.05). The average weighted monthly costs of therapy with particular drugs categories (e.g. mesalazine or biologic drugs) differed significantly between active disease or remission patients. The difference in utility values between patients with a disease in remission (0.898 ±0.126) and patients with an active disease (0.646 ±0.302) was statistically significant.

Conclusions
Our study revealed the social burden of UC and high dependency of direct and indirect costs as well as quality of life on the severity of UC in Poland. The statistically significant differences were identified in total direct and indirect cost, cost of absenteeism, cost of informal care, and health-related quality of life among patients with an active disease compared to patients with a disease in remission.

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