The main problem of cancer is that this is a disease with high mortality rate. Depending on the stage, ill people have different chances for survival. How to define the number of years left, and can lethal cases be avoided? Read what German doctors and professionals from all over the world think about breast cancer rates.
In essence, survival rate is an average number of people that survive with the same diagnosis and the same stage during a certain amount of time. These numbers are used to make prognosis for patients and define within which time treatment would be of any use. Some patients would like to know them, while the other would like to ignore number.
Since this stage is not difficult to treat, five-year survival rate is averagely 96-100%. During this time, operation and radiation therapy can take its toll, and a person is likely to recover. Ten-year survival is about 86%. A decade is enough to do everything possible to win over the malaise.
Some studies show that 80% of people with cancer of 1st stage live up to 8 years. Everything depends on the treatment. If it is not performed at all, rates can be lower, though, most women manage to live for 5 years.
In this instance, about 90% of women live 5 years, and sometimes even more. Treatment requires operations, radiation and sometimes chemotherapy, and if those are combines effectively, a person may live far longer. However the chances of 10-year survival rate are already less than 50%. Properly chosen treatment is what mostly influences the duration of a person’s life. Early diagnosed stage 2 responds well to radiation - it improves survival rate considerably.
Most patients with cancer of stage 2 manage to recover and live out predicted lifespan. Tumors inside boobs and lymph nodes are operable, and the rest of malignant cells will be exterminated with radiation. If you care about yourself, even minor problems with health will not decrease the chances to live 5 and more years. So complete post-treatment visits, follow doctor’s recommendations, and you will get high survival rate of breast cancer.
In this case, about 60 women out of 100 manage to survive. At this stage, tumor is larger than 2 inches and often affects chest wall muscles and breast skin. Tumor may be located not within breast, but affect lymph nodes. Intensive therapy is required to get rid of it. Combination of various methods (operation, chemo, radiation) is often applied. Hormone status also means a lot – hormonal therapy will be required to keep the growth of malignant cells under control.
HER2-positive cancer is also treated with Herceptin, and endocrinal therapy may be required. People undergo it for at least five years after basic treatment completion. If a tumor affected chest wall muscles, mastectomy will be required, and some women would like to reconstruct boobs after it. Generally, it is possible to live 5 years and more, if treatment is successful – every case is possible. Also note that sometimes women succumb not to cancer – fatal cases can be conditioned by other issues.
Women with the last stage manage to survive 5 years only in 15-22% of cases. This type of disease is also called metastatic, and is characterized by tumor diffusion into other organs: lungs, bran, and even bones. Only 2% of women manage to survive a decade and more.
Everything depends on how treatable and operable tumors are. Sometimes there is nothing to be done, and doctors are only capable of relieving symptoms and pain for patients.
Note: survival rates for breast cancer are defined by numerous aspects. These include:
- Type of cancer means a lot, because it defines how quickly tumor spreads and whether cancer cells are susceptible for certain cancer drugs.
- Grade of cells, e.g. how abnormal they look under microscope.
- Cancer may get back during two-five years. Sometimes recurrent tumor appears a decade or two later, but it is rare. The more time has passed, the less likely it is for cancer to get back.
- Hormone sensitiveness is one of things defining the type of cancer.
Mind that statistics give relative numbers: many things depend on a person. Modern medicine uses advanced methods of cancer treatment and diagnosis, so survival rates have become far higher during recent years. Many women manage to outlive predicted lifespan due to intense therapy, lifestyle improvement and just power of will. A doctor will give a detailed prognosis after analyzing such things as family history of diseases, health state, your lifestyle and hormones.
Survival rate is just a number that can be corrected, if you and doctors try to do your best. Remember that if you don’t want to know the prognosis, a doctor will keep this secret.