Trends in resource utilization and cost of illness in patients with active epilepsy in Germany from 2003 to 2020

  • Objective: This study was undertaken to calculate epilepsy-related direct, indirect, and total costs in adult patients with active epilepsy (ongoing unprovoked seizures) in Germany and to analyze cost components and dynamics compared to previous studies from 2003, 2008, and 2013. This analysis was part of the Epi2020 study. Methods: Direct and indirect costs related to epilepsy were calculated with a multicenter survey using an established and validated questionnaire with a bottom-up design and human capital approach over a 3-month period in late 2020. Epilepsy-specific costs in the German health care sector from 2003, 2008, and 2013 were corrected for inflation to allow for a valid comparison. Results: Data on the disease-specific costs for 253 patients in 2020 were analyzed. The mean total costs were calculated at €5551 (±€5805, median = €2611, range = €274–€21 667) per 3 months, comprising mean direct costs of €1861 (±€1905, median = €1276, range = €327–€13 158) and mean indirect costs of €3690 (±€5298, median = €0, range = €0–€11 925). The main direct cost components were hospitalization (42.4%), antiseizure medication (42.2%), and outpatient care (6.2%). Productivity losses due to early retirement (53.6%), part-time work or unemployment (30.8%), and seizure-related off-days (15.6%) were the main reasons for indirect costs. However, compared to 2013, there was no significant increase of direct costs (−10.0%), and indirect costs significantly increased (p < .028, +35.1%), resulting in a significant increase in total epilepsy-related costs (p < .047, +20.2%). Compared to the 2013 study population, a significant increase of cost of illness could be observed (p = .047). Significance: The present study shows that disease-related costs in adult patients with active epilepsy increased from 2013 to 2020. As direct costs have remained constant, this increase is attributable to an increase in indirect costs. These findings highlight the impact of productivity loss caused by early retirement, unemployment, working time reduction, and seizure-related days off.

Download full text files

Export metadata

Author:Laurent Maximilian WillemsORCiDGND, Maja Hochbaum, Johann Philipp ZöllnerORCiDGND, Juliane Schulz, Katja MenzlerORCiD, Lisa Marie LangenbruchORCiDGND, Stjepana KovaćGND, Susanne KnakeORCiDGND, Felix von PodewilsORCiDGND, Mario Hamacher, Hajo HamerORCiDGND, Jens-Peter ReeseORCiDGND, Katharina FreyGND, Felix RosenowORCiDGND, Adam StrzelczykORCiDGND
Parent Title (English):Epilepsia
Place of publication:Oxford [u.a.]
Document Type:Article
Date of Publication (online):2022/03/19
Date of first Publication:2022/03/19
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2023/09/25
Tag:antiseizure medication; cost of illness; economic burden; health care; seizure
Page Number:12
First Page:1591
Last Page:1602
This project was supported by the State of Hesse, Germany, via the LOEWE grant for the Center for Personalized, Translational Epilepsy Research at Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main, Germany.
Open Access funding enabled and organized by Projekt DEAL.
Dewey Decimal Classification:6 Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / 61 Medizin und Gesundheit / 610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - CC BY-NC - Namensnennung - Nicht kommerziell 4.0 International