Let’s face it; colon cancer treatment cost is expensive, just like how cataract surgery can be costly. Just for this reason, developing this cancer might shaken cancer patients and their loved ones. Having this condition will challenge their financial stability. Colon and rectal cancers develop when the cells lining the colon or rectum experience abnormalities and uncontrollable growth. In effect, it can also cause problems to other body organs. Given this point, we can say that treatment is necessary even though the fees would be overwhelming.
Cancer of the colon generally affects the large intestine and the most cancer cases in the United States. Colorectal cancer is a cancer category wherein medical experts grouped colon and rectal cancer. According to studies, it is the third common cancer in the United States among men and women.
Colorectal cancer can either start from the colon or the rectal. The colon is the large intestine, while the rectum connects the colon to the anus. Cancer begins when there is an abnormal growth, called polyps, developing in either of the two.
Colorectal Cancer Treatment Options
Several factors can contribute to what treatment option the patient may undergo. These are the following.
- size and location
- recurring cancer
- the patient’s overall health
Fortunately, there are options that the patient can still try to improve their overall condition. Let’s discuss them individually.
If a person has colorectal cancer, the first method that doctors consider is surgery. It primarily focuses on the colon. The purpose of this surgery is to remove the cancerous tissue and to prevent the spread of cancerous cells. However, this option only works entirely in the early stage of cancer. During the later cancer stage, it may not be sufficient to stop the spread of cancer.
The medications under chemotherapy can destroy the cancer cells all over the body. It is indeed a practical option to address cancer cells. However, it can also affect the healthy cells of patients with cancer.
3 Targeted Therapy
This method involves taking drugs, primarily targeting specific proteins to slow down or prevent the growth of the cancer cells. Unlike chemotherapy, the adverse effects to the patient would be lesser.
The procedure pushes the body to use its immune system for the detection and elimination of cancer cells. It is advisable for patients diagnosed with colorectal cancer. But then again, it can also cause adverse effects. One of these effects is the autoimmune reaction, wherein the body mistakenly attacks its cells.
5 Radiation Therapy
This therapy involves the usage of high-energy radiation beams. As a result, it destroys the cancer cells and prevents them from multiplying. Aside from that, it helps shrink the tumor before the surgery involving the rectal.
Microwaves, radiofrequency, ethanol, and cryosurgery make up the ablation method. Using this option, the doctor can destroy the tumor without needing to remove it. The procedure involves the use of a probe or needle with the help of ultrasound or CT scans.
7 Palliative and end-of-life care
When a doctor decides to use this method, it only means that cancer has already progressed to stage four. Additionally, colorectal cancer has already spread to other body organs. At this point, it is no longer possible to cure it.
Cancer care is indeed available in several methods. However, how much will be the cost of cancer treatments? How can we be sure of their cost-effectiveness? The National Cancer Institute continuously conducts and supports research, training, health information sharing, and other means relative to various cancer aspects.
Generally speaking, preventing cancer is possible. With the help of early detections through routine screenings, it is indeed possible. Screening tests can help detect precancerous polyps. In effect, the patient can receive immediate treatment and prevent it from turning into cancer.
The cost of cancer care in the United States falls second for colorectal cancer. The total cost projected for the year 2020 is approximately around 200.7 Billion US Dollars. But then again, this cost can still increase depending on the cancer diagnosis. Additionally, the stage can affect the total costs of treatment. Meanwhile, the following factors can significantly affect the patients’ total costs for cancer care.
- insurance status
- insurance coverage
- treatment plan
- geographic location
- treatment setting
Furthermore, the costs do not stop after the application of the primary treatment options. Afterward, other treatments may still follow. That includes the following.
- supportive or palliative care
- rehabilitative therapy
- mental health services
- nutrition counseling
- cardiology consultations
Additionally, some patients may experience recurring cancer, wherein cancer symptoms and side effects of treatments appear years after. Health care costs for cancer may take place for the rest of the patients’ lives.
Moreover, indirect costs include transportation, lodging, lost income, secondary effects, and caregiving costs. These fees also add up to the total healthcare costs of cancer patients. The costs for patients receiving cancer treatment are indeed massive.
Preventing Colorectal Cancer
The costs of care for these patients are no joke. It is indeed financially challenging for the patient and the family members as well. Here are some tips to consider to prevent colorectal cancer from developing.
- First, it would be best to undergo regular cancer screening, especially if you have a family history.
- Secondly, observe dietary measures. Eating a healthy diet can reduce the risk of developing colorectal cancer. An unhealthy diet can also affect your dental health.
- Next is to do moderate, regular exercises. Aside from reducing the risk of colorectal cancer, it is essential for overall health.
- Some experts found out that aspirin helps reduce risk in some people, but it would be best to consult your physician about it first.
The Journey of the Patients Dealing with Cancer
Generally speaking, cancer can also affect the patient’s oral condition. Patients can develop complications affecting the mouth. For this reason, it is also necessary to include dental health in the overall costs of care for patients with cancer.
Dental health care providers on this website can help, including other providers, to ensure that the patients can maintain their oral health. No matter what the situation is, it is best to keep dental health in excellent condition.
Besides, we don’t want colorectal cancer patients to have an additional health concern to worry about. Costs related to cancer can become financially frustrating per patient. However, if this cost is going to save the life of your loved one, who will not be willing to sacrifice?
Colorectal cancer: What you need to know, Yvette Brazier, Medically reviewed by Angelica Balingit, MD, Updated on May 9, 2021, https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/155598
The Costs of Cancer, Fightcancer.org, Accessed on August 13, 2021, https://www.fightcancer.org/sites/default/files/National%20Documents/Costs-of-Cancer-2020-10222020.pdf