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Epidemiology and health care utilization of patients suffering from Huntington’s disease in Germany: real world evidence based on German claims data

  • Background: Huntington’s disease (HD) is a rare, genetic, neurodegenerative and ultimately fatal disease with no cure or progression-delaying treatment currently available. HD is characterized by a triad of cognitive, behavioural and motor symptoms. Evidence on epidemiology and management of HD is limited, especially for Germany. This study aims to estimate the incidence and prevalence of HD and analyze the current routine care based on German claims data. Methods: The source of data was a sample of the Institute for Applied Health Research Berlin (InGef) Research Database, comprising data of approximately four million insured persons from approximately 70 German statutory health insurances. The study was conducted in a retrospective cross-sectional design using 2015 and 2016 as a two-year observation period. At least two outpatient or inpatient ICD-10 codes for HD (ICD-10: G10) during the study period were required for case identification. Patients were considered incident if no HD diagnoses in the 4 years prior to the year of case identification were documented. Information on outpatient drug dispensations, medical aids and remedies were considered to describe the current treatment situation of HD patients. Results: A 2-year incidence of 1.8 per 100,000 persons (95%-Confidence interval (CI): 1.4–2.4) and a 2-year period prevalence of 9.3 per 100,000 persons (95%-CI: 8.3–10.4) was observed. The prevalence of HD increased with advancing age, peaking at 60–69 years (16.8 per 100,000 persons; 95%-CI: 13.4–21.0) and decreasing afterwards. The most frequently observed comorbidities and disease-associated symptoms in HD patients were depression (42.9%), dementia (37.7%), urinary incontinence (32.5%), extrapyramidal and movement disorders (30.5%), dysphagia (28.6%) and disorders of the lipoprotein metabolism (28.2%). The most common medications in HD patients were antipsychotics (66.9%), followed by antidepressants (45.1%). Anticonvulsants (16.6%), opioids (14.6%) and hypnotics (9.7%) were observed less frequently. Physical therapy was the most often used medical aid in HD patients (46.4%). Nursing services and speech therapy were used by 27.9 and 22.7% of HD patients, respectively, whereas use of psychotherapy was rare (3.2%). Conclusions: Based on a representative sample, this study provides new insights into the epidemiology and routine care of HD patients in Germany, and thus, may serve as a starting point for further research.

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Author:Christoph Ohlmeier, Kai-Uwe Saum, Wolfgang Galetzka, Dominik Beier, Holger GotheORCiDGND
DOI original:https://doi.org/10.1186/s12883-019-1556-3
Parent Title (English):BMC Neurology
Document Type:Article
Year of Completion:2019
Publishing Institution:Hochschule Hannover
Release Date:2023/06/09
Tag:Claims data analysis; Epidemiology; Germany; Health care utilization; Huntington's disease; Incidence; Prevalence
GND Keyword:Huntington-Chorea; Epidemiologie; Deutschland; Inzidenz <Medizin>
Article Number:318
Page Number:8
Link to catalogue:1884390129
Institutes:Fakultät III - Medien, Information und Design
DDC classes:610 Medizin, Gesundheit
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - CC BY - Namensnennung 4.0 International