Breast Cancer Survival Rate Improving, Costs are also rising substantially
A novel research unveiled that new and expensive breast cancer treatments are associated with an increased chance of survival.
Study's senior author Dr. Cary Gross, director of Yale University's Cancer Outcomes Public Policy and Effectiveness Research Center was of the view, "Our findings indicate that in some instances, newer and costlier approaches may be leading to improved outcomes in breast cancer patients".
Gross said that after knowing the same, they need to tackle the harsh reality, which is what they can afford to pay. There is a need to find out treatments that are effective for patients.
The research published in the issue of Health Affairs has found a link between more expensive medical care and improved survival rates among breast cancer patients. The researchers have not found a cause-and-effect link between the two.
The researchers have gone through the Medicare billing records of almost 9,800 women in the United States. These women aged between 67 and 94 years old had stage two and three breast cancer.
In the next stage, the researchers looked the women's treatment costs and survival rates between 1994 and 1996 and then compared them with trends from 2004 and 2006. The researchers found that the cost of treating patient having stage-3 breast cancer has jumped from $18,100 to roughly $32,600.
They have also found that the five-year survival rate for these women have improved from 38.5% to 52%. In the case of women having stage-2 breast cancer, the average cost in 1996 was $12,300 and was $17,400 in 2006.
The survival rate increased from 68% to 72.5%. Gross said that increasing costs are due to significant rise in the cost of chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Study's first author Dr. Aaron Feinstein said that they consider the findings as glass half-full meaning survival is improving, but costs are also rising substantially.
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