Comparing Outcomes and Cost Between Pancreas Transplant and Standard of Care in Patients With Type 1 Diabetes

Tambi Jarmi, Viengneesee Thao, Bijan J. Borah, Emily Brennan, James P. Moriarty, Aaron Spaulding

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives Pancreas transplant is the only treatment that establishes normal glucose levels for patients diagnosed with diabetes. We analyzed the outcome of pancreas transplant alone (PTA) versus standard of care in the United States from 2008 to 2018. We also developed an economic model to analyze the cost-effectiveness of pancreas transplant versus continuing standard of care. Methods We used the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients database and analyzed PTA recipient survival. Using those results, we developed a Markov model that followed a cohort of 40-year-old patients with type 1 diabetes over a 10-year time horizon. The primary outcomes were (i) the survival benefit of a pancreas transplant, (ii) quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs), and (iii) total costs. Results We found no difference in survival advantage of PTA compared with standard of care (hazard ratio, 1.09; 95% confidence interval, 0.56-2.14). However, pancreas transplant ($172,823, 6.87 QALY) was cost-saving compared with standard of care ($232,897, 6.04 QALY) for type 1 diabetes. Pancreas transplantation was cost-effective in 95% of 10,000 simulations in probabilistic sensitivity analysis, using a $100,000/QALY willingness-to-pay threshold. Conclusions Although there is no difference in survival for PTA compared with standard of care, PTA is a cost-saving therapy for type 1 diabetes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)483-489
Number of pages7
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2022


  • cost-effectiveness
  • pancreas transplant alone
  • survival
  • type 1 diabetes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Hepatology
  • Endocrinology


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