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How long do prostate cancer patients live?


The most accurate answer to that question is “it depends”. Let us explain why.

Doctorsfrequently use survival rates asan essential base of a patient’s prognosis, i. e.a general prediction of the possible course and outcome of the disease’s outcome. Some patients fighting against prostate cancer may wish to be informed of statistical dataconcerning survival rates. Others, on the other hand, don’t see any help in such kind of information, while others may not even want to take a look at them.

During their discussion with the patient concerning his prognosis, many doctors resort to statistics known as “the 5-year survival rate”. The “5-year survival rate”is actually a chart containing percentages of patients who outlive at least 5 years the cancer’sdiagnosis. Naturally, many of them live much longer than just, 5 years, and a great number of them also manage to fully overcome the disease.

Relative 5 – year survival rates, like the ones below, presuppose that some patients will eventually die of causes unrelated to prostate cancer, and compare the actual survival with that expected for men that do not suffer from prostate cancer. That is considered a better means ofobserving the impact cancer has on its patient’s survival.

5-year survival rates are draftedusually be examining information on patients who were treated at least 5 years ago. However, several improvements in detecting methods and treatments of prostate cancerthat might surface in the meantime may contribute to muchbetter outlooks for people that have recentlybeen diagnosed with prostate cancer.

Survival rates, althoughoriginating fromthe outcome of the diseasein numerous past prostate cancer cases, they cannot foresee what will eventually ensue from each differentprostate cancer diagnosis. Numerous diverse factors affect a case’s prognosis, such as the patient’s age and general status, the received medication, the kind of treatment, as well as the cancer’s response to it.

Therefore, the only one capable of telling you how the following numbers relate to your case is your personal doctor.

Based on the most recent data available, and taking into account all stages of prostate cancer:

  • The relative 5-year survival rate is nearly 100%.
  • The relative 10-year survival rate is 99%.
  • The 15-year relative survival rate is 94%.

Please, bear in mind that since 5-year survival rates originate from dataof prostate cancer patients that were diagnosed and treated at least 5 years ago, the same, correspondingly, applies to the 10-year and to the 15 – year survival rates.

Survival rates by stage

The NCI (acronym for the National Cancer Institute in USA) preserves a rich database of national scale on survival statistics for several types of cancer, widely known and referred to as the SEER database. In this database, prostate cancer cases are not categorized by AJCC stage, but by local, regional, and distant cancer stage. Namely:

  • Local stage refers to cancers that don’t seem to have spread outside the prostate gland and, correspondingly belong to AJCC stages I and II. Approximately 80 % percent of all prostate cancer cases are found in Local stage.
  • Regional stage refers to cancers that have spread to neighboring tissues, including stage III and stage IV cancers that have not metastasized to distant organs or tissues; a prime example are T4 tumors and cancers that have spread to neighboring lymph nodes.
  • Distant stage refers to all other cancers belonging to stage IV, i. e. cancers that have metastasized to distant organs and tissues.

5-year relative survival by stage since diagnosis

Stage5-year relativesurvival rate
Localalmost 100%
Regionalalmost 100%
DistantAbout 28%

Lastly, if you or a member of your family is diagnosed with prostate cancer, contact Dr. David B Samadi, the world-famous prostate cancer robotic surgeon, and get all the information about prostate cancer you need to know.


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