Life expectancy with cancer increased across Europe

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Life expectancy with cancer increased across Europe

Across Europe, survival times have increased in the first five years after a cancer diagnosis. For breast tumors and other common types of cancer, life expectancy in Germany was above the European average.

More and more cancer patients survive the first five years More and more cancer patients across Europe survive the first five years after diagnosis. This is reported by the “Apotheken Umschau” (3/2014 A l) with reference to the Eurocare 5 study. This is based on data from around half of European adults and 77 percent of children who were diagnosed with cancer between 2000 and 2007. The study contains data on survival from around ten million cancer patients in 29 European countries and documents whether and how medical progress is reaching the population of Europe.

Germany is above average In 2001 there were around 78 out of 100 breast cancer patients in Europe who survived the first five years after diagnosis, but in 2007 this number rose to around 82 out of 100. At 84 out of 100 in Germany it was even more Survivors. Germans generally have the best prognosis, because the survival values ​​for almost all types of cancer are in the top group. It is particularly gratifying that the improved situation also applies to cancer in children.

Eastern Europe has the lowest survival rates The relative 5-year survival rate had risen throughout Europe during the period mentioned above, especially for prostate cancer, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, a form of lymph node cancer and rectal cancer. In contrast, tumors of the lungs and ovaries stagnated. Overall survival rates were highest in Northern, Central, and Southern Europe. They were lowest in Eastern Europe and for some cancers in England and Ireland.

Different causes for the increasing survival rates Experts are discussing various causes for the increasing survival rates. For example, they can be traced back to improved early detection methods, optimized therapies through new medications, interdisciplinary patient care and the specialization of treatment centers. EUROCARE (Euopean Cancer Registry Based Study On Survival And Care Of Cancer Patients) is the largest research project on survival rates of cancer patients in Europe. The project has been under Italian management since 1989. (sb)

Image: Rainer Sturm /

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