Aerobic exercise for vasomotor menopausal symptoms

a cost-utility analysis based on the Active Women trial

Ilias Goranitis, Leana Bellanca, Amanda J. Daley, Adele Thomas, Helen Stokes-Lampard, Andrea K. Roalfe, Sue Jowett*

*Corresponding author for this work

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    Objective: To compare the cost-utility of two exercise interventions relative to a control group for vasomotor menopausal symptoms. Design: Economic evaluation taking a UK National Health Service and Personal Social Services perspective and a societal perspective. Setting: Primary care. Population: Peri- and postmenopausal women who have not used hormone therapy in the past 3 months and experience ≥ 5 episodes of vasomotor symptoms daily. Methods: An individual and a social support-based exercise intervention were evaluated. The former (Exercise-DVD), aimed to prompt exercise with purpose-designed DVD and written materials, whereas the latter (Exercise-Social support) with community exercise social support groups. Costs and outcomes associated with these interventions were compared to those of a control group, who could only have an exercise consultation. An incremental cost-utility analysis was undertaken using bootstrapping to account for the uncertainty around cost-effectiveness point-estimates. Main outcome measure: Cost per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY). Results: Data for 261 women were available for analysis. Exercise-DVD was the most expensive and least effective intervention. Exercise-Social support was £52 (CIs: £18 to £86) and £18 (CIs: -£68 to £105) more expensive per woman than the control group at 6 and 12 months post-randomisation and led to 0.006 (CIs: -0.002 to 0.014) and 0.013 (CIs: -0.01 to 0.036) more QALYs, resulting in an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio of £8,940 and £1,413 per QALY gained respectively. Exercise-Social support had 80%-90% probability of being cost-effective in the UK context. A societal perspective of analysis and a complete-case analysis led to similar findings. Conclusions: Exercise-Social support resulted in a small gain in health-related quality of life at a marginal additional cost in a context where broader wellbeing and long-term gains associated with exercise and social participation were not captured. Community exercise social support groups are very likely to be cost-effective in the management of vasomotor menopausal symptoms.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article numbere0184328
    Pages (from-to)1-15
    Number of pages15
    JournalPLoS ONE
    Issue number9
    Publication statusPublished - 26 Sep 2017


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    Copyright the Author(s) 2017. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.

    Cite this

    Goranitis, I., Bellanca, L., Daley, A. J., Thomas, A., Stokes-Lampard, H., Roalfe, A. K., & Jowett, S. (2017). Aerobic exercise for vasomotor menopausal symptoms: a cost-utility analysis based on the Active Women trial. PLoS ONE, 12(9), 1-15. [e0184328].