Economic Evaluations Comparing a Trial of Labor with an Elective Repeat Cesarean Delivery: A Systematic Review

Academic Article


  • © 2017 International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR) Background For women who have had a previous low transverse cesarean delivery, the decision to undergo a trial of labor after cesarean (TOLAC) or an elective repeat cesarean delivery (ERCD) has important clinical and economic ramifications. Objectives To evaluate the cost-effectiveness of the alternative choices of a TOLAC and an ERCD for women with low-risk, singleton gestation pregnancies. Methods We searched EMBASE, MEDLINE, CINAHL, Cochrane Library, EconLit, and the Cost-Effectiveness Analysis Registry with no language, publication, or date restrictions up until October 2015. Studies were included if they were primary research, compared a TOLAC with an ERCD, and provided information on the relative cost of the alternatives. Abstracts and partial economic evaluations were excluded. Results Of 310 studies initially reviewed, 7 studies were included in the systematic review. In the base-case analyses, 4 studies concluded that TOLAC was dominant over ERCD, 1 study found ERCD to be dominant, and 2 studies found that although TOLAC was more costly, it offered more benefits and was thus cost-effective from a population perspective when considering societal willingness to pay for better outcomes. In sensitivity analyses, cost-effectiveness was found to be dependent on a high likelihood of TOLAC success, low risk of uterine rupture, and low relative cost of TOLAC compared with ERCD. Conclusions For women who are likely to have a successful vaginal delivery, routine ERCD may result in excess morbidity and cost from a population perspective.
  • Published In

  • Value in Health  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Rogers AJ; Rogers NG; Kilgore ML; Subramaniam A; Harper LM
  • Start Page

  • 163
  • End Page

  • 173
  • Volume

  • 20
  • Issue

  • 1