The rapid evolution of novel, costly therapies for neuroendocrine neoplasia (NEN) warrants formal high-quality cost-effectiveness evaluation. Costs of individual investigations and therapies are high; and examples are presented. We aimed to review the last ten years of standalone health economic evaluations in NEN. Comparing to published standards, EMBASE, Cochrane library, Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects (DARE), NHS Economic Evaluation Database and the Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Database were searched for health economic evaluations (HEEs) in NEN published between 2010 and October 2019. Of 12 economic evaluations, 11 considered exclusively pharmacological treatment (3 studies of SSAs, 7 studies of sunitinib, everolimus and/or 177Lu-DOTATATE and 1 study of telotristat ethyl) and 1 compared surgery with intraarterial therapy. 7 studies of pharmacological treatment had placebo or best supportive care as the only comparator. There remains a paucity of economic evaluations in NEN with the majority industry funded. Most HEEs reviewed did not meet published health economic criteria used to assess quality. Lack of cost data collected from patient populations remains a significant factor in HEEs where clinical expert opinion is still often substituted. Further research utilizing high-quality effectiveness data and rigorous applied health economic analysis is needed.
Keywords: Carcinoid syndrome; Carcinoid tumour; Health economic evaluation; Neuroendocrine neoplasia; Neuroendocrine tumour.
© 2020. The Author(s).