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Prognosis of Prostate Cancer

Prognosis of Prostate Cancer image

Prognosis of Prostate Cancer

Prostate malignancy is the second most frequently reported malignancy in adult males (preceded only by skin cancer) within the United States. However, due to slow growth and even slower rate of metastasis, the cancer of prostate gland is generally not lethal. For example, statistics indicate that about 2/3rd of very elderly males who die of natural causes (or other medical illnesses) have undiagnosed prostate cancer on the autopsy findings.

Survival statistics and prognosis are generally discussed in the specified time periods such as 5-years, 10-years and 15-years. For example, a survival rate of 5-years is referred to as the percentage of patients who survive after a period of 5 years post-diagnosis. Fortunately, the remarkable improvements in the detection and treatment of prostate cancer has resulted in a much better prognosis and long-term survival rate in the patients after initial therapy.

What are some factors that may influence the prognosis of prostate cancer?

Based on the latest available data, the mortality rate of prostate cancer is 1 in 36; with invasive disease. The primary cause of this relatively lower mortality is the fact that most cases of prostate cancer are reported in elderly males. The risk of aggressive disease and advanced metastasis is also low because the serum levels of testosterone (the key growth factor that potentiates the growth and spread of prostate cancer cells) are generally low in elderly males.

The prognosis or survival rates are predicted by the history of the patient, staging and grading of tumor, nature of treatment modalities available, co-morbid medical conditions, response to the therapy and other related factors.  For example:

Based on the latest recorded data, all- stage prognosis of prostate cancer with adequate medical therapy (anti-cancer treatment) is fairly satisfactory. For example, the relative 5-year, 10 years and 15-year survival rates are 100%, 99% and 94% respectively.

Survival rates according to the Staging of Prostate Cancer

SEER database compiled by National Cancer Institute (NCI) collects and analyze the data on the prognosis of different types of malignancies. In this database, the cancer is not grouped in stages by AJCC stages but by a unique type of staging (3).

Study reported in the peer reviewed European Urology (4) journal suggested that active treatment is usually recommended in individuals with localized disease and longer life expectancy. Likewise, prognosis of surgical procedures like radical prostatectomy is higher when compared to less invasive interventions.

It is highly advised to seek your healthcare professional at intervals and learn more about the treatment options to live a longer and productive life.


1. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/prostate/HealthProfessional/page1

2. Wilson, K. M., Giovannucci, E. L., & Mucci, L. A. (2012). Lifestyle and dietary factors in the prevention of lethal prostate cancer. Asian J Androl, 14(3), 365-74.

3. http://www.cancer.org/cancer/prostatecancer/detailedguide/prostate-cancer-survival-rates

4. Heidenreich, A., Bellmunt, J., Bolla, M., Joniau, S., Mason, M., Matveev, V., … & Zattoni, F. (2011). EAU guidelines on prostate cancer. Part 1: screening, diagnosis, and treatment of clinically localised disease. European urology, 59(1), 61-71.

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