Purpose: There is a rising interest in measuring the societal burden of malignancies including prostate cancer. However, population-based studies reporting incidence costs of prostate cancer in the long term are lacking in Europe. The objectives of the study are to analyse the long-term costs and survival of prostate cancer patients treated by radical prostatectomy (RP) or conservative management (nRP). Methods: A retrospective claims data analysis of the National Health Insurance Found Administration of Hungary between 01.01.2002 and 31.10.2013 was carried out. Annual incidence costs related to prostate cancer and overall survival were calculated for a cohort of patients diagnosed between 2002 and 2005. Results: Altogether 17,642 patients were selected; 2185 (12%) of them have undergone RP. The annual incidence rate ranged between 4177 and 4736 cases. Mean age of RP and nRP patients was 59.4 (SD 5.9) and 71.0 (8.4) years, respectively. The mean survival time of the RP patients was significantly longer compared to nRP patients both in the total sample (11.2 vs. 7.4 years; p < 0.001) and in the subgroup <70 years (11.3 vs. 8.8 years; p < 0.001). At the end of the 12-year follow-up, RP patients had a higher (0.83 vs. 0.68), while nRP patients had a slightly lower (0.35 vs. 38) probability of being alive compared with the age-matched general male population. The long-term cumulative costs of the RP and nRP patients amounted to €4448 and €8616. The main driver of the cost difference was the high drug costs in the nRP group. Conclusions: To our knowledge, this study applied the longest time-window in reporting population-based incidence costs in Europe. We found that not only RP patients lived longer but they had significantly lower total long-term costs than nRP patients. Therefore, radical prostatectomy is a cost-effective strategy in prostate cancer.
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