Intramuscular adrenocorticotropic hormone putatively constitutes the most efficacious treatment for infantile spasms. Adrenocorticotropic hormone in the United States is an "orphan drug," made by a single manufacturer. The price of adrenocorticotropic hormone increased almost 14-fold on August 27, 2007. We sought to evaluate the impact of this price increase on treatment practices at our institution, using a retrospective chart review of all children with infantile spasms treated during 2007-2009. We identified 97 patients whose spasms were treated using antiepileptic drugs, and we determined the length of stay for those hospitalized to initiate adrenocorticotropic hormone. Patients before the price increase were more likely to have been treated with adrenocorticotropic hormone as first medication, and were hospitalized 2.2 ± 0.5 S.D. days for initiation. Patients after the price increase were more likely to have been treated initially with oral antiepileptic drugs rather than adrenocorticotropic hormone (P < 0.002). Those commencing adrenocorticotropic hormone after the price increase were hospitalized significantly longer (5.1 ± 0.6 days S.D., P < 0.001). Treatment choices need to be evidence-based, but other factors often influence them.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||4|
|State||Published - Sep 2010|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Developmental Neuroscience
- Clinical Neurology