Is trastuzumab a cost-effective treatment for breast cancer?

Tallal Younis, Chris Skedgel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Trastuzumab is a recombinant humanized monoclonal antibody that is currently approved for the treatment of HER2-neu-positive breast cancer. From a clinical perspective, it is an effective treatment with a relatively favorable benefit/risk profile. From an economic perspective, trastuzumab is an expensive treatment that is associated with high drug acquisition cost. Overall, it appears to provide reasonable 'value for money' (i.e., is cost-effective), especially in the adjuvant as opposed to the palliative setting. Trastuzumab's cost-effectiveness appears to be driven primarily by trastuzumab costs and the magnitude of benefit derived. Longer follow-up of clinical trials is, therefore, required to better estimate the long-term benefits associated with adjuvant trastuzumab, and its true cost-effectiveness in the treatment of HER2-neu-positive breast cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-442
Number of pages10
JournalExpert Review of Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Breast cancer
  • Clinical trial
  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Cost-utility
  • Trastuzumab

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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