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Cancer. 2000 Nov 1;89(9):1917-24.

Cost analysis of pancreatic carcinoma treatment.

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Hudson-Webber Cancer Research Center, Karmanos Cancer Institute, Detroit, Michigan, USA.



Pancreatic carcinoma is a major health issue and financial burden to society. To improve the quality and efficiency of care delivered, it is essential for health care providers to have a good understanding of the cost of treatment.


The authors examined the facility-based costs and survival of 103 patients with pancreatic carcinoma who were treated at the Karmanos Cancer Institute between January 1992 and September 1998. Longitudinal cost data for each patient were obtained, and from those data, 6-month, 1-year, and lifetime total treatment costs were calculated.


The average 6-month, 1-year, and lifetime total treatment costs were $37,327, $42,218, and $48,803, respectively, and the median survival was 7 months. In univariate analyses, the disease stage at diagnosis was a highly significant predictor of total cost. Patients with metastatic disease had the lowest cost, and patients with resectable disease had the highest cost. In multivariate analyses controlling for disease stage, treatment strategies and dual insurance coverage were also important predictors of costs but patient age, race, and gender were not predictive. Disease stage also was highly predictive of survival. In a multivariate analysis controlling for disease stage, chemotherapy and radiation therapy were correlated with longer survival, whereas resection and palliative bypass surgery were not.


The costs of treating patients with pancreatic carcinoma are considerable, even though survival duration typically is short. Disease stage was the most dominating factor determining costs and survival. After controlling for disease stage, chemotherapy, surgery, and dual insurance coverage were also significantly associated with higher cost of care. However, in survival analyses, only chemotherapy and radiation therapy were associated with a significant increase in patient survival.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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