Pharmaco-economics of levosimendan in cardiology: A European perspective

M. S. Nieminen, M. Buerke, J. Parissis, T. Ben-Gal, P. Pollesello, M. Kivikko, A. Karavidas, P. Severino, J. Comín-Colet, G. Wikström, F. Fedele

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction Heart failure places a significant economic burden on health care. Acute heart failure requires hospitalization and often frequent re-hospitalization in expensive wards where vasoactive rescue therapy is often added on top of standard medications. In these lean times, there is a growing need for cost-effective therapeutic options that supply superior support and in addition shorten the length of stay in hospital and reduce re-hospitalization rates. The inodilator levosimendan represents the latest addition to the vasoactive treatments of acute heart failure patients, and it appears to meet these expectations. Our aim was to answer the question whether the treatment efficacy of levosimendan - when selected as therapy for patients hospitalized for acute heart failure - brings savings to hospitals in various European countries representing different economies. Methods and results We took a conservative approach and selected some a fortiori arguments to simplify the calculations. We selected seven European countries to represent different economies: Italy, Spain, Greece, Germany, Sweden, Finland and Israel. Data on the costs of medications and on the cost per day were collected and fed in a simple algorithm to detect savings. These saving varied from country to country, from a minimum of €0.50 in Germany to a maximum of €354.64 in Sweden. Conclusions The use of levosimendan as a therapy for patients hospitalized for acute heart failure provides a net saving to hospitals driven by a reduction in the length of hospital stay. This finding is true in each of the countries considered in this study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337-341
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Cardiology
StatePublished - 15 Sep 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Acute heart failure
  • Benefits
  • Costs
  • Hospitalization
  • Inodilators
  • Length of stay


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