Objective: To compare healthcare resource utilization (HCRU), costs, and treatment adherence and persistence for patients with bipolar disorder treated with lurasidone or cariprazine.

Methods: Adult patients with bipolar disorder who initiated lurasidone or cariprazine as monotherapy or adjunctive therapy between 1 January 2016 and 30 June 2019 were identified from the IBM MarketScan Commercial and Medicare Supplemental Database. The date of the first claim for lurasidone or cariprazine was defined as the index date. A difference-in-difference (DID) analysis, which mitigated bias by using each cohort as its own control, compared the changes in HCRU and costs from 6-months pre-treatment (baseline) to 6-months post-treatment (follow-up) between the two cohorts. Treatment adherence (medication possession ratio and proportion of days covered) and persistence (time to discontinuation) were assessed during the 6-month post-treatment period. Adjusted analyses were conducted using inverse probability of treatment weighting on HCRU, costs, and time to discontinuation.

Results: A total of 16,683 patients treated with lurasidone and 4,128 patients treated with cariprazine were identified. Average age (39-40) and proportion female (68-71%) were similar between cohorts. Both cohorts had reductions in hospitalizations from baseline to follow-up, and the decrease was significantly greater for the lurasidone cohort compared to the cariprazine cohort (change in the proportions of patients with all-cause hospitalizations: -5.3% vs. -2.5%, DID = -2.8%, p<.001). The total healthcare costs increased from baseline to follow-up in both cohorts, and the increase was significantly lower for the lurasidone cohort (change in total all-cause healthcare cost per person: $3,413 vs. $4,642, DID=-$1,228, p = .022). The lurasidone cohort had significantly lower risk of discontinuing treatment (hazard ratio = 0.86, p<.001) than the cariprazine cohort.

Conclusions: Patients with bipolar disorder treated with lurasidone had greater reductions in hospitalizations from 6-months pre-treatment to 6-months post-treatment and had a lower increase in total costs compared to patients treated with cariprazine.

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