Prevention versus early detection for long-term control of melanoma and keratinocyte carcinomas: a cost-effectiveness modelling study
AffiliationDepartment of Population Health, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
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AbstractOBJECTIVE: To compare the long-term economic impact of melanoma prevention by sun protection, with the corresponding impact of early detection of melanoma to decrease melanoma deaths. DESIGN: Cost-effectiveness analysis using Markov cohort model. Data were primarily from two population-based randomised controlled trials, epidemiological and costing reports, and included flow-on effects for keratinocyte cancers (previously non-melanoma skin cancers) and actinic keratoses. SETTING: Queensland, Australia. PARTICIPANTS: Men and women with a mean age 50 years modelled for 30 years. INTERVENTIONS: Daily sunscreen use (prevention) compared with annual clinical skin examinations (early detection) and comparing these in turn with the status quo. PRIMARY AND SECONDARY OUTCOMES: Costs, counts of melanoma, melanoma deaths, keratinocyte cancers, life years and quality-adjusted life years. RESULTS: Per 100 000 individuals, for early detection, primary prevention and without intervention, there were 2446, 1364 and 2419 new melanomas, 556, 341 and 567 melanoma deaths, 64 452, 47 682 and 64 659 keratinocyte cancers and £493.5, £386.4 and £406.1 million in economic costs, respectively. There were small differences between prevention and early detection in life years saved (0.09%) and quality-adjusted life years gained (0.10%). CONCLUSIONS: Compared with early detection of melanoma, systematic sunscreen use at a population level will prevent substantial numbers of new skin tumours, melanoma deaths and save healthcare costs. Primary prevention through daily use of sunscreen is a priority for investment in the control of melanoma.
CitationGordon L, Olsen C, Whiteman DC, Elliott TM, Janda M, Green A. Prevention versus early detection for long-term control of melanoma and keratinocyte carcinomas: a cost-effectiveness modelling study. BMJ Open. 2020;10:e034388.