International Journal of Tumor Therapy 2013
D. Wayne Taylor, The Cameron Institute and McMaster University, Hamilton
Samarium Sm-153 Lexidronam Injection (Samarium-153) is used to treat bone pain that results when cancer spreads to the bone. It has been on the market since 1997 but still is not funded by any one of the 10 provincial cancer care authorities in Canada.
The only cost-effectiveness study using randomized control trial data of Samarium-153 for pain relief in patients with bone metastases clearly demonstrated that Samarium-153 was a dominant therapy. At the time of writing, the product cost of Samarium-153for one patient treatment was $4,500. At that price, in 2012, the total product cost for all of the projected 755 patient treatments in Canada would be $3,397,500.
For an investment of $3,397,500 in Samarium-153, system savings of$7,758,905could be realized for a return on investment (ROI) of 228%. Overall treatment cost-savings would have accrued while Samarium-153 provided suffering cancer patients with equal or better care and clinical outcomes, as measured by pain relief and quality of life.