Purpose: Ex-PRESS shunt is an alternative filtration procedure to trabeculectomy. This study aimed to compare the 1-year cost differences between the 2 operations.
Methods: Subjects were enrolled in a randomized controlled trial comparing Ex-PRESS to trabeculectomy. Surgical cost difference and 1-year postoperative costs (follow-up visits, additional procedures, and medications) were determined and compared. The 95% confidence interval of incremental cost-effectiveness ratio was estimated using bootstrap method.
Results: Forty-three subjects with 1-year follow-up were included. Success rate was not significantly different for Ex-PRESS (65%) versus trabeculectomy (55%, P=0.49). Ex-PRESS had a net surgical cost of $956 greater than trabeculectomy. There was no significant difference in the overall postoperative cost [median (interquartile range); $485 (337, 822) vs. $609 (387, 820), P=0.78], cost of follow-up visits [$303 (275, 358) vs. $317 (275, 385), P=0.75], additional procedures [$182 (0, 365) vs. $182 (0, 365), P=0.69], or glaucoma medication [$0 (0, 68) vs. $0 (0, 90), P=0.8] for Ex-PRESS versus trabeculectomy, respectively. The overall 1-year cost was significantly greater for Ex-PRESS and the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio was $9625 (95% confidence interval, $2435-548,084).
Conclusions: Ex-PRESS is associated with greater surgical cost compared with trabeculectomy. This needs to be considered in conjunction with efficacy and safety if Ex-PRESS is to supersede trabeculectomy.