Ovarian Cancer Home > Ovarian Cancer Prognosis
What Are Survival Rates?Survival rates indicate the percentage of women with a certain type and stage of 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 survival rate is the percentage of people who are alive 5 years after diagnosis, whether they have few or no signs or symptoms of ovarian cancer, are free of disease, or are undergoing treatment. Survival rates are based on large groups of people; they cannot be used to predict what will happen to a particular patient. No two patients are exactly alike, and ovarian cancer treatment and responses to treatment vary greatly.
Factors Influencing the PrognosisFor women diagnosed with ovarian cancer, the prognosis will depend on:
- The ovarian cancer type (see Types of Ovarian Cancer)
- The stage of ovarian cancer (see Ovarian Cancer Stages)
- A woman's age and general health
- Whether the cancer has just been diagnosed or has recurred (come back).
Ovarian Cancer Prognosis and Survival RatesSurvival rates can be calculated by different methods for different purposes. The survival rates presented here are based on the relative survival rate. The relative survival rate measures the survival of ovarian cancer patients in comparison to the general population to estimate the effect of the cancer. The overall 5-year relative ovarian cancer survival rate for 1996-2002 was 44.7 percent. The 5-year relative ovarian cancer survival rates by race and sex were:
- 44.2 percent for white women
- 39.5 percent for black women.