The burden of colorectal cancer survivors in the Netherlands: costs, utilities, and associated patient characteristics

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Purpose The aim of this study is to assess the societal burden of colorectal cancer (CRC) survivorship 2-10 years post-diagnosis in terms of (1) societal costs, and (2) quality of life/utilities, and to analyze associated patient characteristics. Methods This is a cross-sectional, bottom-up prevalence-based burden of disease study, conducted from a societal perspective in the Netherlands. In total, 155 CRC survivors were included. Utilities were measured by the EQ-5D-5L, using the Dutch tariffs. A cost questionnaire was developed to obtain cost information. Subgroup analyses were performed, based on patient characteristics and sensitivity analyses. Results Of all CRC survivors, 81(54%) reported no problems for mobility, 133(88%) for self-care, 98(65%) for daily activities, 59(39%) for pain/discomfort, and 112(74%) for anxiety/depression on the EQ-5D-5L. The average EQ-5D-5L utility score was 0.82 (SD = 0.2) on a scale from 0 (death) to 1 (perfect health). Significant differences in utility score were found for gender, tumor stage, number of comorbidities, and lifestyle score. The average societal costs per CRC survivor per 6 months were estimated at euro971 (min = euro0, max = euro32,425). Significant differences in costs were found for the number of comorbidities. Conclusions This study shows a considerable burden of CRC survivors 2-10 years after diagnosis, in comparison with survivors sooner after diagnosis and with healthy individuals in the Netherlands. Implications for Cancer Survivors Long-term care of CRC survivors should focus on improving the societal burden by identifying modifiable factors, as summarized in the WCRF/AICR lifestyle score, including body composition, physical activity, and diet.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1055-1064
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Cancer Survivorship-Research and Practice
Issue number5
Early online date11 Sept 2021
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022


  • Colorectal cancer
  • Survivorship
  • Societal costs
  • Burden of disease
  • Cost of illness
  • Quality of life
  • EQ-5D
  • CARE
  • EQ-5D-5L

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