Cancer Treatment in the US – just the facts

  • Americans fear cancer more than any other disease.1
  • In 2012, there were nearly 1000 cancer drugs under development in the US.2
  • The incidence and death rate from cancer is just slightly lower than in the 1970s with the mortality rate of some cancers decreasing and others increasing.3
  • In 2008 the overall cost of cancer was $201.5 billion.4
  • In 2010 US sales for cancer drugs average $200 million per product per year versus $45.6 million for cardiovascular drugs. 5
  • About 10 years ago the usual cancer drugs cost $4,500 per month (in 2012 dollars).  In 2010 the price was around $10,000. Two new cancer drugs are priced at $35,000 each per month of treatment. 6
  • In 2006, 25% of cancer patients said they used up all or most of their savings to pay for treatment.  In a 2012 study 2% of cancer patients reported  they were driven into bankruptcy by their disease. 6
  • Many new cancer drugs add only a few months of life.7
  • On September 12, 2011, the Food and Drug Administration announced a reorganization, creating an additional division to deal with the abundance and complexity of oncology applications. 8
  • The budget for the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health is larger than any other institute at the NIH. 9
  • The American Cancer Society, Susan B. Koman Foundation and like organizations raised more than $2 billion. 5
  • Richard Stephenson, founder of the Cancer Centers of American donated $12M in 2012 to FreedomWorks in support of Tea Party candidates.10
  • More than 30,000 doctors (about half from outside the US), pharmaceutical representatives, and others attend the American Society of Clinical Oncologists in Chicago.  A quarter of these are primarily interested in breast cancer. 11
  • Nearly 17% of ductal carcinoma in situ (D.C.I.S.) breast cancer cases may be misdiagnosed. 12
  • D.C.I.S. is diagnosed in more than 70,000 women a year in the US, an increase of 600% since the 1980s.  This accounts for 31% of all breast cancers diagnosed.12
  •  It is estimated that more than 1 million U.S. women have been over-diagnosed (and presumably treated unnecessarily) for breast cancer during the past 30 years. 13
  • In a 1990 law suit, (Wilk v. AMA),  the American Medical Association (AMA) lost an antitrust case against chiropractors. The judge ruled that the AMA engaged in an unlawful conspiracy to restrict trade and carried out covert operations to destroy the practices of chiropractors in America.14
  • A defamation case brought by Steven Barrett of QuackWatch fame revealed he had ties to the FTC, the FDA, and the AMA, hasn’t renewed his medical license since the 1990s and failed the neurological exam preventing him from practicing that specialty.  15
  • Dr. Stanslaw Burzynski developed a cancer treatment that had few side effects and has helped some people with the most incurable types of brain cancer. 16
  • The FDA seized Dr. Burzynski’s medical records, convened four grand juries and held several congressional investigative meetings to try to stop him from treating patients.17
  • Jim and Donna Navarro were told they would face charges of child abuse and child neglect if they refused radiation and chemotherapy, treatments that hadn’t been tested in children, for their son diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor.18
  • The Gerson Institute, with a proven success in curing cancer with diet, colon cleansing, and supplements was pursued by the FDA.  Their clinics are in Mexico and Hungary. 19
  • In his book, “Politics in Healing, The Suppression and Manipulation of American Medicine,” Daniel Haley lists twelve alternative cancer treatments that have been systematically suppressed. 20
  • After 15 years of pursuit, the Texas Medical Board dismissed their case against Dr. Burzynski on November, 11,2012. 21
  •  About 13.7 million people with a history of cancer are alive today (either in remission or being treated). About 1,660,290 new cases of cancer will be diagnosed in 2013, not including skin cancers. 4

References

1 Harris Interactive. “What America Thinks” MetLife Foundation Alzheimer’s Survey, Met Life Foundation, Februrary 2011. https://www.metlife.com/assets/cao/contributions/foundation/alzheimers-2011.pdf

2  Grogan K. Nearly 1,000 cancer drugs in development in USA. Pharma Times June 01, 2012. http://www.pharmatimes.com/article/12-06-01/Nearly_1_000_cancer_drugs_in_development_in_USA.aspx

3 Kohler BA et al. “Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, 1975–2007, Featuring Tumors of the Brain and Other Nervous System.” Oxford University Press, 2011.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3086878/

4 American Cancer Socieity. Cancer Facts and Figures 2013. http://www.cancer.org/acs/groups/content/@epidemiologysurveilance/documents/document/acspc-036845.pdf

5 Wood, S. “Drugs, money, and glory: Is cancer beating cardiovascular disease?” August 11-18, 2011. Heartwire.  http://www.theheart.org/collection/Cancer-vs-cvd.do

6 Bach PB, Saltz LB, Wittes RE. “In Cancer Care, Cost Matters.” New York Times. October 14, 2012. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/15/opinion/a-hospital-says-no-to-an-11000-a-month-cancer-drug.html

7 Johnson A, “Cost-Effectiveness of Cancer Drugs Is Questioned.” Wall Street Journal, July 2, 2009. p. A18.  http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203872404574258302761872972.html

8 FDA News Release, “FDA announces changes in drug center’s oncology office.” September 12, 2011. http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm271501.htm

9 National Institutes of Health. http://www.nih.gov/about/director/budgetrequest/NIH_BIB_020911.pdf

10 Kroll A. “Powerful Tea Party Group’s Internal Docs Leak—Read Them Here.” Mother Jones. January 4, 2013. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/12/freedomworks-rich-donors-armey-kibbe-super-pac

11 American Society of Clinical Oncology  2012 Annual Meeting Attendee Demographics  http://chicago2013.asco.org/2012-annual-meeting-attendee-demographics

12 Saul S. “Prone to Error: Earliest Steps to Find Cancer.” New York Times.  July 19, 2010. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/20/health/20cancer.html

13  Bleyer A,Welch HG. “Effect of three decades of screening mammography on breast-cancer incidence.” N Engl J Med. 2012 Nov 22;367(21):1998-2005. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23171096

14 Wilk v. American Medical Association, 895 F.2d 352 United States Court of Appeals, 7th Circuit, February 7,1990. http://biotech.law.lsu.edu/cases/antitrust/wilk_v_AMA.htm

15 Stephen Barrett, M.D. vs. Tedd Koren, D.C. and Koren Publications, Inc. Court of Common Pleas of Lehigh County for the State of Pennsylvania Court Case No.: 2002-C-1837 http://www.foundationforhealthchoice.com/victory_barett.html

16 Burzynski SR et al. Targeted therapy with antineoplastons A10 and AS2-1 of high-grade, recurrent, and progressive brainstem glioma. Integr Cancer Ther. 2006 Mar;5(1):40-7. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16484713 See also:  http://www.burzynskiclinic.com/publications.html

17 The Burzyski Movie: Cancer is Big Business (Movie) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0zBBfN5mQa8

18 Cut Poison Burn (Movie) http://vimeo.com/46543405

19 The Beautiful Truth (Movie) http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/beautiful-truth/

20 Haley, Daniel. Politics in Healing, The Suppression and Manipulation of American Medicine,” BioMed Publishing Group (December 1, 2000)

21 Texas Medical Board v. Stanislaw R. Burzynski, MD. Docket 501-11-1669MD http://www.burzynskimovie.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=126

 

 

 

 

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