This study examined healthcare costs and medical conditions near end of life for 2,008 veterans with spinal cord injuries and disorders. The average cost was $24,900 in the second year before end of life and reached $61,900 in the final year. The conditions that incurred the most costs included cancer (20.9%), influenza and/or pneumonia(15.1%), heart disease (13.5%), septicemia (5.9%), diabetes (5.3%), and stroke (5.1%). Prevention is important in these areas. Early cancer screening and intervention; influenza and pneumonia vaccines; and blood pressure, cholesterol,and weight control in this population should be emphasized.
Volume 45 Number 6, 2008
Pages 831 — 840
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