Researchers have conducted an analysis that will help them understand survival 5 years after the diagnosis of malignant tumors in Spain, according to an investigation published in the journal Annals of Oncology (2010 May;21 Suppl 3:iii90-96).

Led by María Dolores Chirlaque, a researcher in the Epidemiology Service of the Department of Health and Consumption in Murcia, Spain, the investigation was designed to help researchers understand population and measurement of relative survival to discover survival related to cancer more precisely. Included in the analysis were eight Spanish regions which currently hold a population record of cancer. The analysis showed all the cases of cancer diagnosed between 1995 and 1999, their monitoring until December 2004, and their prognosis.

Results of the investigation revealed that compared to the survival average in Europe, Spain is very close to the European average for the various tumors studied, with differences less than 2%.

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Based on their analysis, the researchers reported the following survival percentages for patients 5 years after diagnosis of the following malignant tumors:

  • Breast cancer: 83% of patients had survived this type of cancer after 5 years
  • Lung cancer: 10% of patients diagnosed with a malignant neoplasm survive more than 5 years
  • Colorectal cancer: On average, 50% to 55% of patients survive 5 years after diagnosis
  • Prostate cancer: 76% of patients survive 5 years after diagnosis
  • Ovarian cancer: 70% of the group between ages 15 to 44 years survive this form of cancer compared to only 19% of patients older than age 74 years
  • Testicular cancer: 95% of patients survive 5 years after diagnosis
  • Skin melanoma: 85% of patients survive 5 years after diagnosis
  • Hodgkin’s lymphoma: Over 92% of young patients survive 5 years after diagnosis, but elderly patients have a survival rate of 50%

“In the past cancer was considered to be fatal. However, nowadays it has come to be recognized as a curable illness,” Chirlaque noted. “Testimony to this is the results shown in this study, which indicate that of every four people who suffer from it (with the exception of lung cancer), more than three overcome it.”