Medical Resource Use and Medical Costs for Radiotherapy-Related Adverse Effects: A Systematic Review

Yi Hsuan Chen*, Dominique Molenaar, Carin A. Uyl-de Groot, Marco van Vulpen, Hedwig M. Blommestein

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review


Background: Despite the need for a proper economic evaluation of new radiotherapies, the economic burden of radiotherapy-induced adverse effects remains unclear. A systematic review has been conducted to identify the existing evidence of healthcare resource use and costs related to radiotherapy-induced adverse effects and also to provide recommendations for including this evidence in economic evaluations. Methods: This systematic review of healthcare resource use and/or medical costs related to radiotherapy-induced adverse effects was performed up until 2020, focusing on patients with head and neck cancer, brain cancer, prostate cancer, eye cancer and breast cancer. Results: Resource use for treating the same adverse effects varied considerably across studies; for instance, the cost for mucositis ranged from USD 2949 to USD 17,244. This broad range could be related to differences in (1) severity of adverse effects in the study population, (2) study design, (3) cost estimation approach and (4) country and clinical practice. Conclusions: Our findings revealed unignorable differences for the same adverse effects, which implied that the potential for the economic burden of adverse effects was being overestimated or underestimated in economic evaluation for radiotherapy.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2444
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2022

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