Comparison of expected health impacts for major cancers: Integration of incidence rate and loss of quality-adjusted life expectancy

Mei Chuan Hung, Wu Wei Lai, Helen H.W. Chen, Wu Chou Su, Jung Der Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The study aims to quantify the expected impacts of different cancers through multiplying the incidence rate by loss-of-QALE (quality-adjusted life expectancy), with QALY (quality-adjusted life year) as the common unit, to aid prevention policy decisions. Methods: 464,722 patients with pathologically verified cancer registered in the Taiwan Cancer Registry during 1998-2009 were used to estimate lifetime survival through Kaplan-Meier estimation combined with a semi-parametric method. A convenience sample for measuring the utility value with EQ-5D was conducted with 11,453 cancer patients, with the results then multiplied by the survival functions to estimate QALE. The loss-of-QALE was calculated by subtracting the QALE of each cancer cohort from the life expectancy of the corresponding age- and gender-matched reference population. The cumulative incidence rates from age 20 to 79 (CIR20-79) were calculated to estimate the lifetime risk of cancer for each organ-system. Results: Liver and lung cancer were found the highest expected lifetime health impacts in males and females, or expected lifetime losses of 0.97 and 0.41 QALYs that could be averted, respectively. While the priority changes for prevention based on expected health impacts were slightly different for females based on standardized mortality rates, those of males involve a broader spectrum, including oral, colorectal, esophageal and stomach cancer. Conclusion: The integration of incidence rate with loss-of-QALE could be used to represent the expected losses that could be averted by prevention, which may be useful in prioritizing strategies for cancer control.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)126-132
Number of pages7
JournalCancer Epidemiology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Feb 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Epidemiology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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