Objectives: This study evaluated the healthcare resource use, work productivity loss, costs, and treatment patterns associated with newly diagnosed idiopathic heavy menstrual bleeding (HMB) using a large employer database. Methods: Medical and pharmacy claims (1998-2009) from 55 self-insured U.S. companies were analyzed. Women aged 18-52 years with ≥2 HMB claims (ICD-9 626.2, 627.0) and continuously enrolled for ≥6 months before the first claim were matched 1:1 with controls. Exclusion criteria were cancer, pregnancy, and infertility; HMB-related uterine conditions; endometrial ablation; hysterectomy; anticoagulant medications; and other known HMB causes. All-cause healthcare resource use and costs were compared between the HMB and control cohorts using statistical methods accounting for matched study design. Treatment patterns were examined for HMB subjects. Results: HMB and control cohorts (n=29,842 in both) were matched and balanced in baseline characteristics and costs. During follow-up, HMB subjects had significantly higher all-cause resource use than did control subjects: hospitalization incidence rate ratio (IRR)=2.70 (95% confidence interval [CI] 2.62-2.79); emergency room visits IRR=1.35 (95% CI 1.31-1.38); outpatient visits IRR=1.29 (95% CI 1.29-1.30). Average annualized all-cause costs were also higher for HMB subjects than controls (mean difference $2,607, p<0.001). Costs associated with HMB claims represented 50% ($1,313) of the all-cause cost difference. Of HMB subjects, 63.2% underwent surgical treatment as initial therapy. Conclusions: In this large matched-cohort study, an idiopathic diagnosis of HMB was associated with high rates of surgical intervention and increased healthcare resource use and costs.
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