The economic burden of SREs in patients with bone metastases is substantial. A recent study showed that the estimated lifetime SRE-related cost per patient suffering from metastatic lung cancer was $11,979 USD, and that radiotherapy accounted for the greatest proportion of cost (61%) by SRE type.1 Finding cures and effective treatments for all types of cancer can help reduce the prevalence and costs associated with bone and joint cancer.
Overall cancers metastatic to bone cause significant pain and morbidity—approximately 50% of patients with metastatic cancer of lung, breast, prostate, and kidney develop bony metastases prior to death. Untreated, these metastases can lead to pathological fractures and cause great pain and disability. Thus, the elucidation of the biochemical steps involved in bone destruction and the development of drugs to combat such steps, have been an example of tremendous scientific advancement and achievement in the field of cancer research and treatment.
- 1. Capalbo S, Delia M, Diomede D, et al: Jaw osteonecrosis associated with use of bisphosphonates and chemotherapy: Paradoxical complication of treatment of bone lesions in multiple myeloma patients. Int J Hematol 2006;83:439-442.