Patients With B-Cell Malignancies Have High Hospital Costs Associated with Relapse

According to a study presented at the 2021 American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting, patients withmantle cell lymphoma (MCL), Waldenström macroglobulinemia (WM), marginal zone lymphoma (MZL), and chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) have high hospital costs associated with disease relapse, especially among minority populations. The findings were presented by lead author Asher Chanan-Khan, MBBS, MD.

Dr. Chanan-Khan and colleagues used the Premier Healthcare Database to assess health care resource use among 23,952 CLL, 3,387 MCL, 2,655 MZL, and 1,811 WM patients in the U.S. hospital database. The population of interest were at least 18 years of age, with at least one inpatient or two hospital-based outpatient visits, and who received treatment for their conditions from January 2014 to October 2019. The researchers used descriptive analysis to assess patient sociodemographic and hospital characteristics, all-cause and lymphoma-related health care resource utilization, and costs. Costs were procured using patients’ discharge files and hospital billing records.

According to the results, the average length of stay (LOS) of inpatient hospitalization ranged from 6.3 days for CLL to 7.4 days for MCL. Mean costs per hospitalization ranged from $19,566 (CLL) to $24,439 (MCL). The study found that non-White patients have markedly longer average LOS days compared with white patients:

  • CLL: 18.3 vs. 14.8
  • MCL: 21.7 vs. 18.3
  • MZL: 21.6 vs. 18.5
  • WM: 19.0 vs. 14.5

Across the four lymphoma types, analysis showed that higher hospitals costs were correlated with patients who were non-White, Hispanic/Latino, treated in hospitals located in the Northeast or West, or had Medicaid. The investigators noted statistically significant increased costs of care for patients who received targeted therapy or supportive care, such as blood transfusions.

Real-world data demonstrated the significantly high total hospital costs once patients with MCL, WM, MZL, and CLL patients were hospitalized, with significantly higher impact to minority populations,” the researchers concluded. They added that future studies “are needed to explore the reason for admission, clinical outcomes, and potential preventive interventions.”