P423 Treatment escalation and associated cost in German Ulcerative Colitis patients treated with advanced therapies

Picker, N.(1);Patel, H.(2);Wilke, T.(3);Rosin, L.(4);Bokemeyer, B.(5);

(1)Ingress Health, HWM GmbH, Wismar, Germany;(2)Galapagos, Nv, Mechelen, Belgium;(3)IPAM, e.V., Wismar, Germany;(4)Galapagos, Biopharma Deutschland GmbH, München, Germany;(5)Interdisziplinäres Crohn Colitis Center Minden und Medizinische Klinik I- Universitätsklinik Schleswig-Holstein- Campus Kiel, Gastroenterologische Praxis Minden, Minden, Germany


Advanced therapies used in moderate-to-severe Ulcerative Colitis (UC) may show a secondary loss of response (LOR) over time, requiring patients to undergo dose escalation or switching. Our study aimed to investigate the frequency of dose escalation in real-world practice and evaluated the associated cost.


Using German claims data (AOK PLUS) including prescription data, we identified UC patients by either at least two confirmed outpatient diagnoses or one primary inpatient diagnosis (ICD-10 K51). Analyzed patients initiated an advanced therapy (anti-TNF, vedolizumab, tofacitinib) between 01/01/2015-30/06/2019.
Therapy escalation was defined as dose increase exceeding the recommended maintenance dose according to product labels by more than 150%. Time to first escalation was analyzed using a Kaplan-Meier estimation. The observation ended with the discontinuation of index therapy + 90 days, or loss to follow-up, whatever occurred first. End of therapy was determined in case of a supply gap of >60 days or switch of the advanced therapy. Patients with a follow-up < 6 months were excluded.Direct UC-related resource use and costs accounting for hospitalizations, outpatient treatment, drug costs according to pharmacy sales prices were reported per patient-year (PY).


Among 574 UC patients who initiated an advanced therapy, 328 patients (median age: 37 years; female: 52.1%; biologic-naïve: 85.4%) with sufficient follow-up time (median: 12.2 months) were identified.
Out of these, 59 patients (19%) were dose-escalated within the first year, whereas 73 patients (22%; anti-TNF: 61; vedolizumab: 12) were found to experience a therapy escalation during the whole follow-up time (average daily dose during maintenance therapy: adalimumab: 5.3 mg, infliximab: 14.6 mg, golimumab: 3.7 mg, vedolizumab: 11.1 mg, tofacitinib: n/a). Total observed direct cost related to UC amounted to €39,514/PY (95%-CI: 37,469-41,558), with €37,369/PY (34,852-39,885; Figure 1) caused by UC-related medication (95%). In comparison, UC-related total direct costs and drug costs for patients without any observable escalation were much lower (€30,425/PY [29,672-31,178]; p-value <0.001 and €28,066/PY [27,230-28,902]; p-value <0.001). Frequency of hospitalizations due to UC (0.3 [0.2-0.5] vs. 0.4 [0.3-0.5]; p-value: 0.947) and gastroenterologist visits (2.1 [1.6-2.6] vs. 2.3 [2.1-2.5]; p-value: 0.361) were similar among both groups.


Nearly one-fifth of observed patients required therapy escalation in the first year, most likely due to secondary LOR. This results in higher UC-related costs. Payers should consider rates and costs of dose escalations when evaluating the cost-effectiveness of advanced therapies.