For lung cancer, treatment typically involves one or more of the following options, alone or in combination: surgery which can cost $15,000 or more; chemotherapy, which can cost $10,000 -$200,000 or more; radiation therapy, which can cost $10,000-$50,000 or more; and/or drug therapy, which can cost as much as $4,000 or more a month depending on the drug used.
One study on the economic burden of lung cancer estimates that the overall costs, from diagnosis to a maximum of two years thereafter, to be about $46,000. The study found that the main cost drivers were hospitalization (49% of costs) and outpatient office visits (35.2% of costs), with a monthly initial treatment phase cost of $11,500 per patient.
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality reports that patients with lung cancer are typically hospitalized for 7 days at a cost of $15,600 total, or $2,200 per day.
If it appears unlikely that the condition can be cured, a doctor may recommend that a patient avoid harsh treatments and opt for supportive care instead. One recent study found that patients who received palliative care incurred, on average, $6,900 less in hospital costs during a given admission than patients who received usual care. Most insurance plans cover palliative care.
Patients who experience symptoms may undergo a series of tests to detect cancerous cells, including CAT scans, MRI or X-ray.
According to a study published in the international journal Lung Cancer, the failure of initial treatment is associated with markedly increased costs. Patients needing additional rounds of treatment had total costs of $120,650, compared to $45,953 for those receiving initial treatment only.
- Tom Colwell
- Janis Virant
- Betty Mcclenahan
- Laura Hall
- Marci and Steve Abels
#1 fundraising platform
More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more
In the rare case something isn’t right, we will work with you to determine if misuse occurred. Learn more
Expert advice, 24/7
Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more