Economic burden of patients affected by non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC): the LIFE study

Maria Rita Migliorino, Antonio Santo, Giampiero Romano, Diego Cortinovis, Domenico Galetta, Oscar Alabiso, Giacomo Cartenì, Sabrina Vari, Gianpiero Fasola, Antonio Pazzola, Dario Giuffrida, Alberto Zaniboni, Alberto Caprioli, Flavia Longo, Valentina Acciai, Filippo de Marinis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is a condition with significant clinical burden for patients and relevant economic impact. Limited evidence exists on the management costs of NSCLC patients, especially in the late phases of the disease. The main objective of this analysis was to evaluate the economic impact of clinical management of NSCLC patients in the Italian population. Methods: This evaluation was an economic analysis of the observational and multicentre study LIFE, which described the therapeutic approach in routine clinical practice for NSCLC patients, progressing after first-line treatment. This study evaluated resource consumption in different Italian hospitals, including specialist visits, hospitalizations, accesses to first aid, pharmacological treatment, laboratory tests and palliative care. The National Healthcare Service perspective was adopted. Results: In this study, N = 191 patients enrolled in the LIFE study were included. Patients were aged 64.2 years and were predominantly males (66%). In the different line of treatments, monthly costs of patients ranged between €1471 (first line) and €1788 (third line). The overall healthcare cost over the average period of observation (16.4 months) was €25,859 per patient. Overall, oncology therapy was the cost driver, although the composition of medical costs changed across the different lines of treatment, with costs for concomitant medication and palliative care being predominant in late phase of the disease. Conclusions: The economic burden of NSCLC is extremely high during the overall period of treatment, and a significant level of care is required in each stage of the disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)783-791
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Cancer Research and Clinical Oncology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2017


  • Cost per line of treatment
  • Economic burden
  • Line of treatment
  • Non-small cell lung cancer
  • Observational study

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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