Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of Multifocal Intraocular Lenses Compared to Monofocal Intraocular Lenses in Cataract Surgery

Jenny Q. Hu, Reith Sarkar, Ruti Sella, James D. Murphy, Natalie A. Afshari*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To determine the cost-effectiveness of multifocal intraocular lenses (IOLs) compared to that of monofocal IOLs from a societal and health care sector perspective. Design: Cost-effectiveness analysis. Methods: A Markov model was constructed that simulated patients who received either multifocal or monofocal IOLs during cataract surgery. Postoperatively, patients could experience spectacle dependence, glare, and haloes. Cost-effectiveness was determined by measuring the incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) as the incremental cost in dollars per quality-adjusted life year (QALY) gained. Treatments with an ICER below the standard willingness-to-pay (WTP) threshold of $50,000/QALY were considered cost effective. One-way sensitivity analyses and probabilistic sensitivity analyses were used to evaluate model sensitivity to cost, utilities, and other model inputs. Results: Multifocal IOLs were associated with a 0.71 QALY increase at an increased cost of $3,415 compared with monofocal IOLs, leading to an ICER of $4,805/QALY from the societal and health care sector perspectives. The cost-effectiveness model was most sensitive to patient age, probability of spectacle dependence with multifocal IOLs and monofocal IOLs, and the disutility of glasses. Probabilistic sensitivity analysis found multifocal IOLs to be the cost-effective option compared with monofocal IOLs 99.9% of the time at a WTP threshold of $50,000/QALY. Conclusions: From a societal and health care perspective, multifocal IOLs would be considered a cost-effective strategy compared to monofocal IOLs for patients who desire a higher chance to be spectacle-free. However, more studies need to be conducted to further evaluate the efficacy of multifocal IOLs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)305-312
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Ophthalmology
StatePublished - Dec 2019
Externally publishedYes


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