Ipercolesterolemia e rischio cardiovascolare in Italia:

modello di cost of illness

DOI 10.23753/htafocus2019.01.002

Andrea Marcellusi, Chiara Bini, Paolo Sciattella, Daniele Rossi, Stefano Taddei, Massimo Uguccioni, Francesca Fanelli,

Luca Gazzi, Francesco Saverio Mennini 


Objective Hypercholesterolemia is a condition characterized by very high levels of cholesterol in the blood and represent a high-risk factor for developing coronary artery disease. The aim of the study was to elaborate a cost of illness model and estimate the economic burden of hypercholesterolemia in Italy from the National Health Service (SSN) perspective.

Methods A systematic literature review was conducted to identify epidemiological and economic data which were subsequently used to inform the model. Direct costs were estimated multiplying the hospitalization, drugs and management costs derived by the literature with the Italian epidemiological data (Bottom-Up approach). 

Results A prevalence-based cost of illness model was developed to estimate the direct costs associated with hypercholesterolemia. The total economic burden associated with hypercholesterolemia was estimated in € 1.3 billion for about 10 million patients estimated in Italy with hypercholesterolemia (90% of which were affected by polygenic hypercholesterolemia). Fifty-seven percent of the total expenditure was due to hospitalization cost while thirty-eight was due to monitoring cost. Only five percent of the total expenditure was due to the pharmacological therapy.

Conclusions Considering the crucial role of hypercholesterolemia in the development of cardiovascular diseases, the prevention and treatment of dyslipidaemias should be considered an integral part of cardiovascular prevention interventions. These measures could certainly lead to a reduction in health care expenditure for cardiovascular disease.

Key words: hypercholesterolemia, cardiovascular diseases, cost of illness, direct costs