Sometimes you just need to visualize the information you’ve been given to believe it. So tonight I made a graph of Mom’s CA-119 numbers to show her how dramatically they’ve dropped from February when she had her lung wedge resection to remove a cancerous tumor in her lung, to today when she had her 9th chemotherapy treatment.
The numbers have dropped from a high of 1780 to today’s reading of 134, with significant drops each month using the drug Gemzar.
Today I saw the bill for Mom’s treatments. Each individual chemotherapy treatment is billed directly to insurance at a cost of $14,539 per treatment.
The billing further explains that $3276 is paid by Blue Cross (her secondary insurance) and $2610 by Medicare for each treatment. Thankfully… no further out of pocket costs are required other than her supplemental insurance premiums and the costs for her expensive pancreatic enzymes.
The bad news… that’s $130,851 worth of chemotherapy administered from April 11th to June 27th.
The good news… an astounding 92.4% drop in her CA-119 cancer antigen numbers during that same time.
Can Mom be one of the few pancreatic cancer patient out of the 53,000 or so diagnosed this year who go on to beat the odds?
I’m betting she is.