When one gets sick, not only do you not feel well, you also need to splash out hard-earned money just to try to get back to normal. Sicknesses and diseases provide a double whammy to the person’s body and their finances.
They say that an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure, but what about the diseases that are congenital and unavoidable? Besides, nobody in their right mind would want to suffer any kind of sickness if given a choice. Yet, every year, one out of every 500 people spends more than $100,000 in hospital bills.
Even worse is if you suffer from medical conditions that would really take a toll on both your body and bank account. Here are the 10 most expensive hospital treatments.
10 HIV - $25,000
It used to be a death sentence. There was a time when those with HIV were ostracized and treated differently. Though there is still a stigma associated with the disease, it surely has come a long way from the 80's and early 90's. Earvin Magic Johnson, the basketball superstar who had to retire from the sport in the early 90's because of the disease, is still around and seemingly healthy. Of course, he has to take an expensive cocktail of drugs and medicine to keep his body going.
9 Cancer - $49,000
Probably everyone in this world knows someone who has suffered from cancer. Cancer is defined as a malignant neoplasm and can cover a wide range of different diseases that all involve the unregulated growth of cells. It has the ability to divide and invade other parts of the body through the bloodstream or the lymphatic system. There are currently more than 200 forms of cancer known to afflict humans. Some may not require intensive treatments, although a good percentage do need chemotherapy and even surgery. Amounts to be spent can thus range anywhere from $14,000 to $123,000.
8 Transplant - $51,000
Transplants can be done to help replace a damaged or absent one. It can be done from one person to another, with the source either living or cadaveric. Organs that can be transplanted include the heart, kidneys, liver, lungs, pancreas, intestine and thymus. Tissues can also be transplanted, like skin, bones, tendons, cornea, veins and heart valves. The most common organ transplants are the kidney, liver and heart, while the most common tissue transplants are the cornea and the tendons.
7 Stroke - $61,000
A stroke occurs when there is a disturbance in the supply of blood to the brain, resulting in the rapid loss of brain function. Hemorrhage or ischemia, or the lack of blood flow, may cause this. The lack of blood flow may occur because of blockage resulting from thrombosis or arterial embolism. A stroke victim may be unable to move one or more limbs on one side of the body, understand or formulate speech or see one side of the visual field. It is the second leading cause of death worldwide. Risk factors include high blood pressure, old age, diabetes, high cholesterol, tobacco smoking and atrial fibrillation.
6 Hemophilia - $62,000
Hemophilia is a genetic disorder that is hereditary in nature. It can impair a person’s ability to control blood clotting or coagulation, which is imperative in order to stop bleeding in case of a broken blood vessel. The disease is more likely to manifest itself in male patients because it is an X-chromosome disorder. Those suffering from this disease are likely to bleed for a longer time than other people, with even a minor injury resulting in blood loss that could last for days or weeks.
5 Heart Attack, with Cardiac Revascularization - $72,000
Medically, it is known as a myocardial infarction or acute myocardial infarction. Heart attacks result from the interruption of blood supply to the heart muscle due to blockage of an artery. Symptoms include chest pain, shortness of breath, nausea, palpitations, vomiting, anxiety and sweating. One technique to widen the artery is through angioplasty. To ensure that the blood vessel remains open, a stent may be placed when the procedure is done.
4 Coronary Artery Disease - $75,000
Coronary artery disease is the leading cause of death worldwide. It is the most common type of heart disease and can cause heart attacks. It is caused by the build up of plaque along the inner walls of the heart’s arteries. It thus narrows the arteries and restricts the flow of blood to the heart. Therapeutic options include drugs, medical interventions like angioplasty and bypass surgery.
3 Neonate, or Premature Babies, with Extreme Problems - $101,000
It is probably one of the worst feelings in the world, to have a newly born baby beset with sickness and diseases. And the risk becomes greater when the baby is born prematurely. These infants are at greater risk of both short and long term complications. This is because the baby’s organs are not yet mature enough to allow normal survival after birth. Advances have been made however in the care of premature babies. Still, the prevalence of preterm deaths is high and it is one of the top causes of deaths among infants worldwide.
2 End-Stage Renal Disease - $173,000
End-stage renal disease is also known as chronic kidney disease. It involves the progressive loss of renal function over several months or years. Most at risk are those with high blood pressure, diabetes or those with relatives who also have the disease. It can be identified through a blood test for creatinine. Once the disease reaches the fifth stage, it becomes known as end-stage renal disease with the patient suffering from severe illness and poor life expectancy if untreated.
1 Respiratory Failure on Ventilator - $314,000
Respiratory failure occurs when there is inadequate gas exchange by the respiratory system. Oxygen and carbon dioxide, or both, levels cannot be maintained within normal ranges. This usually afflicts patients in intensive care. It may be caused by a variety of conditions, including pulmonary dysfunction, cardiac dysfunction, fatigue, neurological disease, drug intoxication and others.