Economic and gastrointestinal safety comparisons of etodolac, nabumetone, and oxaprozin from insurance claims data from patients with arthritis

Clin Ther. Nov-Dec 1998;20(6):1218-35; discussion 1192-3. doi: 10.1016/s0149-2918(98)80117-3.


This study was conducted to compare the effect of etodolac, nabumetone, and oxaprozin use on gastrointestinal (GI) safety and associated costs based on insurance claims information from practice settings. Data were obtained from a national claims database (MarketScan) for the years 1992 to 1994. The claims data of interest were for patients with arthritis who had used etodolac, nabumetone, or oxaprozin exclusively during a 9-month follow-up period (ONLY groups), or these drugs plus (PLUS groups) the other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) ibuprofen, naproxen, diclofenac, sulindac, piroxicam, ketoprofen, or indomethacin. For each group, we obtained information on the use of inpatient and outpatient services for GI-related events and the associated costs. All GI admissions were classified as NSAID-induced or possibly NSAID-induced events based on International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-9 CM) codes. All outpatient upper GI ulcers or bleeding episodes were also identified by specific ICD-9 CM code. There were no significant between-group demographic differences. The proportions of patients with NSAID-induced and possibly NSAID-induced GI admissions were 0.1% and 0.4% for the etodolac-ONLY, 0.3% and 1.0% for the nabumetone-ONLY, and 0.1% and 0.5% for the oxaprozin-ONLY groups, respectively (P > 0.05), and a similar pattern was observed among the PLUS groups. In outpatient settings, 3.9%, 4.2%, and 4.9% of the etodolac-, nabumetone-, and oxaprozin-ONLY patients, respectively (P > 0.05), and 6.0%, 5.3%, and 4.7% of the etodolac-, nabumetone-, and oxaprozin-PLUS patients, respectively, had at least one upper GI ulcer/bleeding claim (P > 0.05). The total health care costs for 9 months were approximately $3000 each for the etodolac-, nabumetone-, and oxaprozin-ONLY groups. Oxaprozin, nabumetone, and etodolac had similar GI-safety and associated-costs profiles based on information from practice settings. Also, in patients who used multiple NSAIDs, the groups did not differ in their GI-safety and cost profiles.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / adverse effects
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / economics*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / therapeutic use*
  • Arthritis / drug therapy*
  • Arthritis / economics*
  • Butanones / adverse effects
  • Butanones / economics*
  • Butanones / therapeutic use*
  • Costs and Cost Analysis
  • Data Interpretation, Statistical
  • Databases, Factual
  • Etodolac / adverse effects
  • Etodolac / economics*
  • Etodolac / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Insurance, Pharmaceutical Services / economics
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nabumetone
  • Oxaprozin
  • Propionates / adverse effects
  • Propionates / economics*
  • Propionates / therapeutic use*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Butanones
  • Propionates
  • Etodolac
  • Nabumetone
  • Oxaprozin