45P - Economic evaluation of two therapeutic approaches in non small cell lung cancer

Date 15 April 2016
Event European Lung Cancer Conference 2016 (ELCC) 2016
Session Poster lunch
Topics Anticancer Agents
Bioethics, Legal, and Economic Issues
Thoracic Malignancies
Biological Therapy
Presenter Kostantinos Syrigos
Citation Journal of Thoracic Oncology (2016) 11 (supplement 4): S57-S166. S1556-0864(16)X0004-4
Authors K. Syrigos1, A. Somarakis1, R. Triggidou2, I. Kainis3, P. Boura1, M. Zontanos1, T. Gogalis1, G. Kontopyrgias4
  • 1Oncology Unit, 3rd Department Of Medicine, University of Athens, “Sotiria” General Chest Diseases Hospital, 11527 - Athens/GR
  • 2Pathology Department, University of Athens, “Sotiria” General Chest Diseases Hospital, 11527 - Athens/GR
  • 310th Department Of Pulmonology, University of Athens, “Sotiria” General Chest Diseases Hospital, 11527 - Athens/GR
  • 4Department Of Pulmonology, Metropolitan Hospital, Athens/GR



Lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer related death worldwide. The increasing number of new lung cancer cases and the emergence of new, high cost, therapeutic approaches have increased the total cost of its treatment. As Greece is under economic crisis, cost of treatment is crucial for the decision of therapeutic approach. In this study we evaluate the cost of two different therapeutic choices, erlotinib and docetaxel, in the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer in the second line setting.


We reviewed the medical files of patients from the Oncology unit of the 3rd Internal medicine department of “Sotiria” General Hospital of Chest Diseases that received 2nd line treatment for NSCLC, from May 2009 till August 2013. 62 patients were treated with docetaxel and 52 patients were treated with erlotinib. We evaluated the efficacy of the choices and then calculated the direct medical cost. For docetaxel we used the price of the cheapest generic.


The Median Progression Free Survival in the 2nd line setting was for erlotinib 2.76 months and for docetaxel 2.20 months. The total medical cost of erlotinib and docetaxel were €5,897.7 (1,365.6–25,332.2, standard deviation 5,053.56) and €3,192.6 (658.2–9,174.4, standard deviation 2,122.1) respectively. The monthly cost of erlotinib and docetaxel were €2,452.1 and €2,179.4 respectively. No statistically significant differences were observed in the results. The cost of erlotinib is higher than that of docetaxel, but this difference is counter-balanced by the high cost of treatment of the adverse events due to the use of docetaxel.


There is no statistically significant difference between erlotinib and docetaxel in the 2nd line setting, neither for the efficacy nor for the cost. Both choices are acceptable regimens. The choice of the therapeutic agent should take into account the advantages and disadvantages of an oral and intravenous treatment, the different safety profile of the two drugs and of course patient preference.

Clinical trial identification

Legal entity responsible for the study

University of Athens


University of Athens


All authors have declared no conflicts of interest.