Breast cancer survival rates help you understand how long other people with your type of cancer have survived after diagnosis. These breast cancer survival rates do not help you know how long you will live after your diagnosis. But they do give you a better idea of your type of treatment’s success rates.
Researchers usually provide cancer survival rates in five year increments. But many people live much longer than just five years. A five year survival rate shows what percentage of people lived at least five years from their cancer diagnosis. As an example, a five year survival rate of 95 percent means 95 of every 100 people diagnosed with that type of breast cancer are still alive five years after their diagnosis.
Relative survival rates are more accurate than five year survival rates. That is because these rates compare women with breast cancer to women in the general population who do not have breast cancer. If a five year relative survival rate for a cancer is 95 percent, this means that people with that cancer are about 95 percent as likely as other people without that cancer to live for five years after diagnosis.
Survival rates look at large numbers of people and their outcomes, not people with your precise circumstances. So these numbers do not predict what will happen in your case. Remember these limitations for breast cancer survival rates:
Your breast cancer outlook depends partly on the stage of your cancer. Early stage cancers provide the best outlook for long term survival. But you must remember that your outlook depends on many individual factors.
According to the National Cancer Institute’s SEER database of people diagnosed with breast cancer from 2007 to 2013, below are five year relative breast cancer survival rates: