• Is Provenge worth it?

    Asked by Marty on Tuesday, January 29, 2013

    Is Provenge worth it?

    If you look at the results of taking Provenge it sounds like it (on average) adds 4 months. It costs $100,000 and requires six visits. Is it worth doing?

    6 Answers from the Community

    6 answers
    • ticklingcancer's Avatar

      Marty, I think this is a question that only you can answer. Assuming you have the money for treatment, are the 4 months worth it?

      over 4 years ago
    • mgm48's Avatar

      Interesting! You assume you're the median patient. None of is average and almost all trials are done with mostly "last hope" patients (those who have tried everything else available to them. So the idea of $100,000 for 4 months isn't the relevant question in my opinion. The real question is does it really work?

      On of my physicians is skeptical in that he can see no reason for the improved overall survival benefit of the trial. That is no improvement in PSA, no reduction in tumor size, in other words nothing physical was observed. A Provenge patient I know had a fair amount of trouble with the procedure and claims to never have recovered his energy.

      Based on that I'm holding Provenge for one of the last things I try. Just my 2 cents...

      Keep it positive and smile :)

      over 4 years ago
    • tomget's Avatar

      I don't recall hearing about Provenge..I'll have to Google it.

      over 4 years ago
    • Peroll's Avatar

      Marty mgm is correst that the 4 additional months iof survival is a very misleading number. What you shold look for for better guidance is the 1 year survival rate number. I recently read an article on a new cancer drug that in trials on average added only 2 months to the survival rate something like the difference between 6 months and 8 months. However the one year survival rate was 35% vs 22% with the older treatment. Thus the conclusion is that the drug didn't help everyone but the ones it did help it appears to have made a signifinicant difference. As mgm noted this result is because most of the people in the trial have exhaused other treatments and are the worst case patients. This means that there is much better promise in giving it to healthier patients.

      As for the cost one has to remember that it costs at least $1billion to develop and get approved a new drug and that the company then has only a few years (likely 10 to 15 at most) to recover the development cost before generics can be made available. With the the relatively small markets for some of these drugs that drives the initial costs up. But is no one buys them then development of new drugs will stop. While the system isn't perfect and may not be fair to those without insurance I for one want the drug development to continue. I have gotten at least three drugs that were not available when I was initially diagnosed 8 1/2 years ago. Good Luck

      over 4 years ago
    • psbell59's Avatar

      Provenge can improve the results of therapies after the fact. It will take 6 months or so for the vaccine to "kick" . Husband had Provenge in July/August 2011. Last CT after Docetaxel showed no new growth and scarring around lesions. Husband was diagnosed 2001, going on 12 years. Hormone resistant since 2009.

      over 4 years ago
    • living1963's Avatar

      Is Provenge worth the price? What is a day worth? How about 4 months? I became refractor two years ago. After a year of rising p.s.a. I opted for provenge and was denied due to my age. I was 48 and I was told it would not work as I was too young. Not one to be a submissive little patient I appealed to that state and won. I completed provenge June 1st of 2012 and I feel fantastic and have zero side effects. Studies show that provenge early makes other drugs more effective. I am glad I did provenge

      over 4 years ago

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