IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Impact of Fibromyalgia Severity on Health Economic Costs: Results from a European Cross-Sectional Study

  • Andreas Winkelmann

    (Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University Hospital Munich, Munich, Germany)

  • Serge Perrot

    (Department of Internal Medicine and Therapeutics, Pain Consultation, Htel Dieu Hospital, University of Paris, Descartes, Paris, France)

  • Caroline Schaefer

    (Covance Market Access Services Inc., Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA)

  • Kellie Ryan

    (Covance Market Access Services Inc., Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA)

  • Arthi Chandran

    (Pfizer Global Health Economics, New York, New York, USA)

  • Alesia Sadosky

    (Pfizer Global Health Economics, New York, New York, USA)

  • Gergana Zlateva

    (Pfizer Global Health Economics, New York, New York, USA)

Registered author(s):

    Background: Fibromyalgia (FM) is a chronic disorder characterized by persistent and widespread pain, often accompanied with fatigue, sleep disturbance and other symptoms. FM affects a population mostly of a productive age and is thus associated with significant lost productivity and disability, in addition to healthcare costs for medications and physician office visits. While other studies have examined FM costs in Europe, few, if any, have examined cost by FM severity level. Objective: The objective of this study was to examine health resource utilization (HRU) and costs associated with FM in routine clinical practice in France and Germany across disease severity levels. Methods: A total of 299 patients with FM, previously diagnosed by a rheumatologist, were recruited from physician offices in France and Germany during routine visits. Subjects completed questions about their pain, health-related quality of life, treatment satisfaction, productivity and FM-related out-of-pocket expenses; site staff recorded clinical, treatment and HRU information for the previous 3 months based on a review of medical records. FM severity was defined using subjects' Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ) total scores. Annual costs from a societal perspective were calculated in &U20AC;, year 2008 values, and included direct costs (e.g. physician office visits, medications, out-of-pocket expenses) and indirect costs (e.g. missed days of work and lost productivity). The mean annual costs were calculated based on 3-month data. Results: Subjects were reported to have a mean (SD) of 2.9 (1.9) physician office visits in France and 4.9 (3.2) visits in Germany over the past 3 months, corresponding to an average of 11.6 and 19.6 visits a year, respectively. A total of 91% of subjects were receiving prescription medication for their FM. French subjects reported a lower use of anti-inflammatories (39% of subjects) and a higher use of other analgesics (59% of subjects) than German subjects (67% and 34%, respectively). Subjects in full- or part-time employment reported missing a mean (SD) of 2.7 (6.0) days of work due to FM in France and 2.1 (3.8) days in Germany over the last 4 weeks (corresponding to 32.4 and 25.2 days of work missed due to FM per year in France and Germany, respectively). In France, total costs were &U20AC;7900 (direct &U20AC;910, indirect &U20AC;6990). In Germany, total costs were &U20AC;7256 (direct &U20AC;1765, indirect &U20AC;5491). A trend of higher total costs was seen as FM severity increased; however, the results were significant (p - 0.003) only for Germany. Conclusions: FM imposes a significant economic burden on society. Consistent with other studies, FM subjects were found to have substantial costs, over 75% of which were driven by indirect costs from lost productivity. These costs increased as FM severity increased, resulting in a more than 200% difference in cost between mild and severe FM. Overall FM costs were similar between France and Germany; although lost productivity accounted for a higher proportion of costs in France.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Pay per view

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Pay per view

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by Springer Healthcare | Adis in its journal Applied Health Economics and Health Policy.

    Volume (Year): 9 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 125-136

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:wkh:aheahp:v:9:y:2011:i:2:p:125-136
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wkh:aheahp:v:9:y:2011:i:2:p:125-136. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dave Dustin)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.