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Managing the costs of asbestos-related throat cancer treatment

By Treven Pyles

Posted on June 29th, 2020

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) panel, in the year 2006 concluded that occupational asbestos exposure can contribute to the development of throat cancer. A diagnosis of throat cancer is overwhelming as it involves high treatment costs, which may create financial and emotional stress in the life of a victim as well as their families.

Throat cancer is a collective term for the malignant tumors that develop in the pharynx, larynx (voice box), and tonsils. The people exposed to asbestos have a 40% higher chance of developing laryngeal cancer than others. Working in occupations such as mining, smelting, construction, and textile processing have put the former workers at 2-3 times higher risk of throat cancer. The estimated costs of medical care during the first 2 years after diagnosis of pharyngeal cancer amounted to as high as $140,000.

Analysis of costs for throat cancer care

Throat cancer care includes chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation therapy, and the costs of these treatment techniques are termed primary costs. Additionally, a person with throat cancer will have expenses related to travel and accommodation, lost income, and interests on debts fall under the secondary costs. Several factors influence the cost of treatment of throat cancer, and include:

  • Your age and general health status
  • Stage of your throat cancer
  • Whether there is a distant spread of the cancer
  • Health care provider/cancer center chosen
  • Treatment plan
  • Coverage of insurance

The costs of diagnostic tests for throat cancer are quite high as misdiagnosis is common in such types of cancers requiring multiple tests to arrive at a confirmed diagnosis. Once the diagnosis of throat cancer is established, the treatment plan will be figured out, and the average costs of different treatment modalities include:

  • Chemotherapy: $15,567 for three cycles, $11,296 for two cycles
  • Radiation therapy: $8,505
  • Surgery (laryngectomy): $17,520

In addition to these treatment costs, most patients with throat cancer will have to pay additional costs related to their treatment such as:

  • Travel costs: The cost of transportation to and from the cancer treatment center if you are getting treatment far away from your home. Accommodation and food costs may add up if you will have to stay away from home during the treatment.
  • Cost of follow-up care: This involves costs related to post-treatment check-up visits to specialist physicians and primary care physicians, regular prescription medicines, tests for screening recurrence of cancer, and psychological counseling.
  • Costs related to finance: This may include lost income due to the inability to work while on treatment and the accumulating interests over debts or loans availed to pay for the medical treatment.

Recover the costs of throat cancer by seeking financial compensation

If you or your loved one has been diagnosed with throat cancer and had been exposed to asbestos at the workplace in the past, you may file a claim with the asbestos trust funds. You have to begin the legal process as early as possible, therefore, it is important to seek assistance from attorneys specializing in asbestos-related claims. Our legal team will evaluate your case and help you recover the maximum possible financial compensation you are entitled to. You can rely on us for your legal needs so that you can fully concentrate on healthcare.