What do insurance companies look at with Prostate Cancer?
Age. Getting approved for insurance coverage will depend on the age you were diagnosed with prostate cancer. This type of cancer commonly affects men around the age of 60, so if you are 60, had cancer, and treated it, you will likely be able to get coverage right away. In other cases, men who are closer to 40 when they were diagnosed, may have to wait around 5 years after their cancer is successfully treated to get coverage. This is because cancer at this early age may present a higher risk to the insurance company.
Gleason Score. Insurance companies will want to see how aggressive your cancer was before being treated based on your Gleason score. Scores of 7 or lower are considered low-grade, and present less of a risk for the cancer to spread and grow. This will result in te greater likelihood of being approved at a more favorable rate.
Pre-Cancer PSA. Prostate-specific antigen (PSA), or the proteins secreted by the cells found in the prostate gland, are most likely elevated in men who have prostate cancer. The PSA level can be determined by means of a blood sample. Normal PSA levels range from 3-5 ng/ml, depending on the age of the person concerned. A very high PSA level (could be in the hundreds or thousands point) would usually mean that a man has prostate cancer, so the lower the score, the better chance of coverage.
Stage. Just like any other cancer, a prostate cancer diagnosis is given a stage number that is rooted on the size and the extent of the spread of cancer cells. Men who are diagnosed with either stage 1 or stage 2 prostate cancers, are generally more insurable than those of a higher stage; especially after treatment. The higher the stage, the longer a person may have to wait to get coverage.
Grade. Cancer grades, from 1 to 6, determine the aggressiveness of the tumor or cancer cells. These grades are also used in coordination with the Gleason scores.