Background: Breast cancer is a major cause of death for women in Japan. The objectives of this study were to estimate and project the economic burden associated with breast cancer in Japan and identify the key factors that drive the change of the economic burden of breast cancer. Methods: We calculated the cost of illness (COI) every 3 years from 1996 to 2020 using governmental statistics. COI was calculated by summing the direct costs, morbidity costs, and mortality costs. Results: From 1996 to 2011 COI was trending upward. COI in 2011 (697 billion yen) was 1.7-times greater than that in 1996 (407 billion yen). The mortality costs accounted for approximately 65-70 % of the total COI and were a major contributing factor to increase in COI. It was predicted that COI would continue to trend upwards until 2020 (699.4-743.8 billion yen depending on the model), but the rate of increase would decline. Conclusions: COI of breast cancer has been steadily increasing since 1996. While the rate of increase is expected to plateau, the average age at death from breast cancer is still less than that from other cancers, and the relative economic burden of breast cancer will continue to increase in the foreseeable future.
Matsumoto, K., Haga, K., Kitazawa, T., Seto, K., Fujita, S., & Hasegawa, T. (2015). Cost of illness of breast cancer in Japan: trends and future projections. BMC Research Notes, 8(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13104-015-1516-y