The earlier a breast cancer is diagnosed the smaller it is likely to be and the less likely it is to have spread. Some of the most important factors that determine survival of a breast cancer patient include:
- Location of the tumor and how far it has spread
- Grade of the tumor
- Stage of the tumor
- Hormone receptor positive or negative status
- Presence of tumor markers
- General condition and age of the patient
The overall 5-year relative survival for 2003-2009 from 18 SEER geographic areas was 89.2%. Five-year relative survival by race was: 90.4% for white women; 78.7% for black women. Five-year overall survival is the percentage of women with breast cancer who live (survive) five years beyond their diagnosis. For example, about 88 percent of women diagnosed with stage I breast cancer survives five years beyond their diagnosis. Survival rates are averages and vary depending on each person’s diagnosis and treatment.
The survival rates below are based on women diagnosed with breast cancer in 2001 and 2002. With progress in treatment since that time, survival for women diagnosed today may be higher.
Five-year overall survival rates by breast cancer by stage:
The following reflects the 5 year observed survival for breast cancer patients diagnosed in 2006 at Manatee Memorial Hospital:
Death rates from breast cancer in the United States have decreased steadily in women since 1990. The decrease in breast cancer death rates is thought to represent progress in both earlier detection and improved treatment modalities. There is rapidly increasing knowledge in the fields of cancer genomics and cell biology to develop more effective and less toxic treatments for breast cancer and to improve our ability to identify cancers that are more likely to recur. In the future, this knowledge will be used to tailor breast cancer therapy to the individual patient.