Trans-obturator tape compared with tension-free vaginal tape in the surgical treatment of stress urinary incontinence: a cost utility analysis

BJOG. 2011 Apr;118(5):550-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-0528.2010.02845.x. Epub 2011 Feb 4.


Objective: To conduct an economic evaluation of the use of trans-obturator tape (TOT) compared with tension-free vaginal tape (TVT) in the surgical treatment of stress urinary incontinence (SUI) in women.

Design: Cost utility analysis from public-payer perspective, conducted alongside a randomised clinical trial (RCT).

Setting: Health services provided in Alberta, Canada.

Population: A total of 194 women who participated in the RCT, followed to 1 year from surgery.

Methods: Data collected on all women in the RCT, over 12 months following surgery. Comparisons undertaken between RCT groups for cost and quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs). Multiple imputation used for the 10% missing data. Bootstrapping used to account for sampling uncertainty. One-way sensitivity analysis conducted for productivity loss due to time away from work.

Main outcome measures: Utility--15D questionnaire was used to calculate QALYs. Costs over 12 months--from trial data, health provider and provincial ministry of health.

Results: The TOT group had a non-significant average saving of $1133 (95% CI -2793; 442), with no difference in average QALYs between groups (95% CI -0.02; 0.01). TOT was cost-saving in over 80% of bootstrapping replications, over a wide range of willingness-to-pay.

Conclusion: The bootstrapping replication results suggest that TOT could be cost-effective compared with TVT in the treatment of SUI. However, these results must be confirmed by longer-term assessment of clinical and economic outcomes, because of concern that surgical tape palpable at 12 months may lead to vaginal erosion and further treatment.

Trial registration: NCT00234754.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Care / statistics & numerical data
  • Quality of Life
  • Quality-Adjusted Life Years
  • Suburethral Slings / economics*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Urinary Incontinence, Stress / economics
  • Urinary Incontinence, Stress / surgery*

Associated data