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Your chances of survival can vary widely depending on the stage of your disease when you begin treatment.
Overall (considering all types and stages of lung cancer), 18% of people with lung cancer survive for at least 5 years. Survival rates tend to be low when compared to the 65% 5-year survival rate for colon cancer, 91% for breast cancer, and over 99% for prostate cancer.
- People who have early stage (stage I) NSCLC and undergo lung surgery have a 60% to 70% chance of surviving 5 years.
- People with extensive nonoperable lung cancer have an average survival duration of 9 months or less.
- Those with limited SCLC who receive chemotherapy have a 2-year survival rate of 20% to 30% and a 5-year survival rate of 10% to 15%.
- Less than 5% of people with extensive-stage SCLC (small cell cancers) are alive after 2 years, with a median survival range of eight to 13 months.
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Santacroce, Luigi. "Paraneoplastic Syndromes." Medscape.com. Aug. 13, 2014. <http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/280744-overview>.
United States. National Cancer Institute, U.S. National Institutes of Health. "What You Need to Know About Lung Cancer." July 2012. <http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/types/lung>.