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Embargoed Jan./Feb. Annals of Family Medicine tip sheet

for a product after seeing an ad on television.

Creating Demand for Prescription Drugs: A Content Analysis of Television Direct-to-Consumer Advertising
By Dominick L. Frosch, Ph.D., et al

Direct-to-Consumer Advertising: Is It Too Late to Manage the Risks?
By Douglas A. Levy, J.D.


THE COST OF TREATMENT OPTIONS FOR ACUTE OTITIS MEDIA

Acute otitis media (AOM), or inflammation of the middle ear, is responsible for 13.6 million pediatric office visits annually in the United States at an estimated annual cost of $2.98 billion in 1995.

Using a cost-effectiveness analysis to compare four treatment regimens that include observational and antibiotic treatments, researchers find that treatment for AOM is a trade-off between relieving symptoms and cost. The least costly option was delaying prescription, an approach which involves waiting for 72 hours to see if symptoms improve before instituting antibiotics, while the most effective course of treatment, coming at a greater cost, was seven to 10 days of amoxicillin. The analysis finds that the additional cost per patient for a course of amoxicillin is $22.90, which would result in an additional $311 million in annual health care expenditures if each of the 13.6 million cases of AOM were treated with this regimen. The author suggests that these findings highlight the quantifiable costs and benefits that should be considered when deciding about treatment for AOM, supporting recent guidelines of the American Academy of Family Physicians and the American Academy of Pediatrics that include an observational option for lower-risk children with AOM.

Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of Treatment Options for Acute Otitis Media
Andrew S. Coco, M.D., M.S.


FAMILY AND INTERNAL MEDICINE COLLABORATE ON NEW GUIDELINES FOR VENOUS THROMBOEMBOLISM

This issue of Annals of Family Medicine includes new clinical practice guidelines and an evidence review for diagnosis a
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Contact: Kristin Robinson
kristinr@aafp.org
913-906-6000, ext. 5221
American Academy of Family Physicians
29-Jan-2007


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