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Prostate Cancer Hospitalizations Declining

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AHRQ News and Numbers

Release date: May 24, 2007

Men were less likely to be hospitalized for prostate cancer treatment in 2004 than in 1997, according to the latest News and Numbers summary from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Hospitalizations for treatment of the disease fell nearly 30 percent in those 8 years.

Prostate cancer is the second-most common cancer in men. Currently, an estimated 2 million men in the United States are living with prostate cancer.

  • Approximately half of the men hospitalized for prostate cancer treatment were 45 to 64 years old, while men ages 65 to 84 year accounted for 44 percent of the total. About 5 percent were older than 85 years of age and less than 1 percent were ages 18 to 44 years.
  • Nearly 73 percent of the men hospitalized for treatment underwent open prostatectomy—the most common procedure for the disease—while 13 percent had transurethral prostatectomy, a less invasive procedure often done on an outpatient basis.
  • Hospitals charged $1.7 billion in total for the stays of patients admitted for prostate cancer treatment.
    • Almost half of the total amount was billed to private insurers.
    • About 43 percent was billed to Medicare.
    • About 4 percent was billed to Medicaid.
    • Another 1.5 percent was billed to uninsured patients.
    • The remainder was charged to other payers such as the Veterans Administration (VA), the United States military, or other State programs.
  • During the same 8-year period, there was an 8 percent increase in the number of hospital stays for men who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer but were being treated for other conditions.

This AHRQ News and Numbers summary is based on data in HCUP Statistical Brief No. 30: Hospital Stays for Prostate Cancer, 2004 (PDF Help). The report uses statistics from the Nationwide Inpatient Sample, a database of hospital inpatient stays that is nationally representative of all short-term, non-Federal hospitals. The data are drawn from hospitals that comprise 90 percent of all discharges in the United States and include all patients, regardless of insurance type, as well as the uninsured.

For more information or to speak to an AHRQ data expert, contact Bob Isquith at or call (301) 427-1539.

Current as of May 2007


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