7 out of 10 price-hike drugs weren't necessary, ICER finds

Of the 10 drugs with the biggest price hikes in 2021, seven lacked new clinical evidence to sponsor their growing price tags, according to the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review's annual report

Altogether, these price jumps resulted in $805 million in additional costs, the ICER said in a Dec. 6 news release. 

Here are the seven therapies listed in order of their net price increases on U.S. drug spending:


Net price increase 

Increase in drug spending after net price change

Drugmaker of brand name

Xifaxan (rifaximin)

12.14 percent

$174.7 million

Salix Pharmaceuticals

Invega Sustenna/Trinza (paliperidone)

7.32 percent

$170.4 million

Janssen Pharmaceuticals

Prolia (denosumab)

6.11 percent

$123.8 million


Entyvio (vedolizumab)

4.5 percent

$118 million

Takeda Pharmaceutical Co.

Promacta (eltrombopag)

11.46 percent

$94.9 million


Rexulti (brexpiprazole)

7.61 percent

$67.9 million

Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co. and Lundbeck

Lupron (leuprolide)

10 percent

$54.9 million


Compared to the ICER's last three reports, this is the fourth annual year that seven of the biggest price increases for drugs weren't supported by new clinical data. Since 2017, though, 2021 was the first year in which the effect on U.S. drug spending was less than $1 billion. 

Three drugs covered by Medicare Part B were also bereft of clinical benefit-spurred price bumps, the ICER found: 


2019-20 list price increase

Average per-patient increase in spending

Drugmaker of brand-name

Somatuline Depot (lanreotide)

11.2 percent


Ipsen Biopharmaceuticals

Adcetris (brentuximab vedotin)

9.23 percent


Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. and Seagen

Krystexxa (pegloticase)

11.78 percent


Horizon Therapeutics

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