Genotypic Analysis of Drug-Resistant HIV Cost-Effective

WESTPORT, Conn-Genotypic analysis of drug-resistant HIV strains appears to be cost-effective.

A new study conducted by Milton C. Weinstein, MD, from the Harvard School of Public Health, used an HIV simulation model to incorporate data from several HIV-related trials to analyze the cost-effectiveness of genotypic resistance testing. HIV-infected subjects with baseline CD4 counts of 250 cells per microliter were the target group.

Researchers found that testing following antiretroviral failure increased life expectancy by 3 months and cost $17,900 per quality-adjusted-life-year (QALY) gained. The figure for primary resistance testing was $22,300 with 20% prevalence of primary resistance, but increased to $69,000 when prevalence was assumed to be only 4%.

The cost per QALY gained never exceeded $25,000 when effectiveness, multiple cost factors, quality-of-life weights, and discount rates were varied.

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