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The role of galenic innovation in improving treatment compliance and persistence: three case studies

Authors Zoellner Y, Balp, Gili Marco

Published 4 August 2011 Volume 2011:3 Pages 109—116


Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

York Zoellner1, Maria-Magdalena Balp2, Andrea Gili Marco2
1Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, Hamburg, Germany; 2Novartis Pharma AG, Basel, Switzerland

Background: The purpose of this study was to explore whether newer galenic formulations with lower treatment burdens are associated with better patient compliance and persistence compared with older more burdensome modalities.
Methods: Data from the IMS Disease Analyzer database were analyzed retrospectively for two pairs of analogs (alendronate sodium once daily vs once weekly and immediate-release vs extended-release methylphenidate) and one pair of drugs with similar indications but important differences in convenience and dosing instructions (desferrioxamine vs deferasirox). Compliance was calculated as the sum of prescription durations for all prescriptions for each patient over 1 year. Persistence was calculated as the time between first and last prescriptions over 2 years (1 year for deferasirox and desferrioxamine). Data from Germany and the UK were available and used for analysis.
Results: Incremental improvements in compliance were +30% in the UK and +26% in Germany for alendronate once weekly vs once daily, +14% in the UK and +19% in Germany for extended-release vs immediate-release methylphenidate, and +15% in Germany for desferrioxamine vs deferasirox. Incremental improvements in persistence were +9 months in the UK and +8 months in Germany for alendronate once weekly vs once daily, +4 months in the UK and +3 months in Germany for extended-release vs immediate-release methylphenidate, and +2 months in Germany for deferasirox vs desferrioxamine.
Conclusion: The new formulations that we evaluated were associated with better compliance and persistence compared with older formulations. Despite the fact that some sources of bias could not be excluded, it is likely that these improvements can be attributed to the lower treatment burdens of the galenic formulations of the drugs considered. Further investigation is required to confirm these findings and to determine whether new galenic formulations can improve health outcomes in routine clinical practice.

Keywords: galenic formulation, immediate-release methylphenidate, alendronate, deferasirox

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Zoellner Y, Balp MM, Gili Marco A

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