Besides lifetime risks, we estimated life expectancy (LE), expected years of life lost (EYLL), lifetime costs, and cost-per-LY (life-year) stratified by different stages of esophageal cancer (EC). From the Taiwan Cancer Registry, we collected 14,420 EC to estimate the incidence rates during 2008–2014. They were followed to 2015 to obtain the survival function, which was extrapolated to lifetime by a semiparametric method. We abstracted the monthly healthcare expenditures from the reimbursement database of National Health Insurance, which were multiplied with the corresponding survival probabilities to quantify lifetime cost and cost-per-LY after adjustments. About 93.7% of patients were male; 90.8% had squamous cell carcinoma. Most patients were diagnosed at advanced stages, with 44.6% and 28.3% at stages III and IV. The lifetime risk of EC in males increased in Taiwan with a cumulative incidence rate (CIR30–84) of 0.0146% (2008~2010) to 0.0165% (2013–2014). The EYLL for stages I-IV were 15.8, 17.5, 20.5, and 22.5, while the average of cost-per-LY for stages I-IV were US$ 6,987, $8,776, $12,153, and $22,426. EC in Taiwan appears to have shifted into younger ages groups and incidence is still increasing. Strategies for prevention, early diagnosis and treatment are warranted to improve the cost-effectiveness and control of this cancer.
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