Economic burden of head and neck cancer
- Cite this article as:
- Lee, J.M., Turini, M., Botteman, M.F. et al. HEPAC (2004) 5: 70. doi:10.1007/s10198-003-0204-3
This literature review presents the economics of head and neck cancer (HNC), the world's sixth most common neoplasm. HNC economics is complicated by the involvement of multiple body sites, multiple medical specialties, and multiple treatment modalities. Economic analyses of HNC published in English between 1990 and 2002 were identified from electronic data sources. Additional studies were identified manually from bibliographies of retrieved articles. Study characteristics and findings were analyzed. We identified 51 studies that reported original cost data. Most were cost-identification or cost-comparison studies; only one evaluated cost-effectiveness. Few assessed the overall economic burden of HNC or cost effectiveness of current treatments, thus making appropriate comparisons impossible. Systematic measurement of the cost of HNC and its treatment in existing practice settings would be valuable. Inclusion of economic components in clinical trials and the conduct of retrospective or prospective observational studies, such as patient registries, would yield important new information.