15 January 2021

New study shows that radiotherapy costs men more than other treatments

External beam radiotherapy brings a high financial burden for prostate cancer patients, according to a study published in the Journal of Urology.

The research compared self-reported financial burden between active surveillance, radical prostatectomy, and external beam radiotherapy among 2121 patients. 15% of patients reported a large burden of treatment costs within six months of treatment, declining to 3% after five years.

External beam radiotherapy was associated with the highest financial burden of the treatments after one and three years when controlling for age, education, and income. Age, race, education, and risk group were also associated with greater financial burden.

“Prospective studies that directly measure out-of-pocket and indirect costs are warranted in order to identify those most at risk,” the study authors said.

Last year, Europa Uomo released findings from its EUPROMS quality of life study which indicated that radiotherapy was associated with worse mental health and worse sexual quality of life than prostatectomy.