Lung Cancer Home > Lung Cancer Survival Rate

The survival rate for lung cancer refers to the percentage of people who survive the disease for a specific time period after their diagnosis. Relative survival rate, which we talk about in this article, measures the survival of people with lung cancer in comparison to the general population. The overall 5-year relative lung cancer survival rate for 1995-2002 was 15 percent.

Survival Rate for Lung Cancer: An Introduction

The lung cancer survival rate indicates the percentage of people with a certain type and stage of lung cancer who survive the disease for a specific period of time after their diagnosis. In most cases, statistics refer to the 5-year survival rate. The 5-year rate of survival is the percentage of people who are alive 5 years after a lung cancer diagnosis, whether they have few or no signs or symptoms of lung cancer, are free of disease, or are receiving treatment for lung cancer.
 
The rates of survival for lung cancer are based on large groups of people; it cannot be used to predict what will happen to a particular patient. No two patients are exactly alike, and lung cancer treatment and responses to treatment vary greatly.
 

Factors Influencing the Lung Cancer Survival Rate

In general, the lung cancer survival rate will depend on:
 
  • The stage of lung cancer (see Lung Cancer Stages)
  • The lung cancer type (see Types of Lung Cancer)
  • Whether there are symptoms (such as coughing or trouble breathing)
  • The patient's general health
  • Whether the cancer has just been diagnosed or has recurred (come back).
     
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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