The Rising Cost of Cancer Care in the Era of Individualized Therapy: A Q&A With Thomas J. Smith, MD

Anna Azvolinsky, PhD
Published: Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Dr. Thomas J. Smith

Thomas J. Smith, MD

Emerging targeted therapies are extending survival in many cancers, but the cost of these new treatments is often high. For example, sipuleucel-T (Provenge, Dendreon) for metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer costs ,000 for the full course of three infusions. Ipilimumab (Yervoy, Bristol-Myers Squibb), the first treatment for metastatic melanoma to improve overall survival in more than 10 years, costs 0,000 for four infusions over a span of just three months. Everolimus (Afinitor, Novartis), for renal cell carcinoma and pancreatic cancer, costs ,000 a month.

Like it or not, economics are driving treatment choices for patients in the real world.
The cost of the end-of-life care is very high for cancer patients. How do oncologists reconcile these costs with providing the best treatment for their patients, while also recognizing whether the quality of life may be more important for a patient with advanced-stage cancer?

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TitleExpiration DateCME Credits
Community Practice Connections™: 2nd Annual School of Nursing Oncology™Sep 28, 20191.5
Community Practice Connections™: 3rd Annual International Congress on Oncology & Pathology™Aug 30, 20201.5
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