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Non-Hodgkin lymphoma survival statistics

One-, five- and ten-year survival statistics for non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) by age and trends over time are presented here. There are also data by stage at diagnosis, geography and on socio-economic variation.

Find out more about the counting and coding of this data.

 

One-, five- and ten-year survival

80% of men survive NHL (all subtypes combined) for at least one year, and this is predicted to fall to 68% surviving for five years or more, as shown by age-standardised net survival for patients diagnosed with NHL during 2010-2011 in England and Wales (Table 3.1).1 79% of women survive NHL for one year or more, and 70% are predicted to survive for at least five years.

Table 3.1: Non Hodgkin Lymphoma (C82-C85), Age-Standardised One-, Five- and Ten-Year Net Survival, Adults (Aged 15-99), England and Wales, 2010-2011

1-Year Survival (%) 5-Year Survival (%) 10-Year Survival (%)
Men Net Survival 79.7 68.2 62.4
95% LCL 79.7 68.1 62.2
95% UCL 79.7 68.3 62.6
Women Net Survival 79.4 69.5 64.1
95% LCL 79.4 69.4 63.8
95% UCL 79.5 69.6 64.3
Adults Net Survival 79.6 68.8 63.2
95% LCL 79.6 68.7 63.0
95% UCL 79.6 68.8 63.4

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95% LCL and 95% UCL are the 95% lower and upper confidence limits
Five- and ten-year survival is predicted using an excess hazard statistical model

NHL survival continues to fall beyond five years after diagnosis. 62% of men and 64% of women are predicted to survive their disease for ten years or more, as shown by age-standardised net survival for patients diagnosed with NHL during 2010-2011 in England and Wales (Figure 3.1).1 Out of 20 common cancers in England and Wales, ten-year survival for NHL ranks 7th highest overall.

Figure 3.1: Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (C82-C85), Net Survival up to Ten Years after Diagnosis, Adults (Aged 15-99), England and Wales, 2010-2011

surv_curve_NHL.swf

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Survival for NHL is reported in Scotland and Northern Ireland,2,3 though it is difficult to make survival comparisons between countries due to different methodologies and criteria for including patients in analyses.

Survival varies considerably by NHL subtype. One-year relative survival is significantly better for follicular lymphoma (96%) than for diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (65%), mantle cell lymphoma (71%) or marginal zone lymphoma (92%) for patients diagnosed during 2004-2011 in the Haematological Malignancy Research Network (HMRN) region (Figure 3.2).4 Five-year survival follows a similar pattern and is significantly higher for follicular lymphoma (87%) and significantly lower for mantle cell lymphoma (27%) in comparison with the two other main NHL subtypes. Mantle cell lymphoma, which is an aggressive NHL subtype, shows the largest decrease in survival between one and five years after diagnosis.

Figure 3.2: Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma, Main Subtypes, One- and Five-Year Relative Survival, All Ages, HMRN, 2004-2011

surv_1_5yr_nhl_subtypes.swf

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In this section, survival by subtype is provided for the HMRN region in the north-east of England.4 Read more about the counting and coding of this data.

section reviewed 08/12/14
section updated 08/12/14

By age

Five-year survival for NHL (all subtypes combined) is highest in the youngest men and women and decreases with increasing age. Five-year net survival in men ranges from 83% in 15-39 year-olds to 36% in 80-99 year-olds for patients diagnosed with NHL in England during 2007-2011 (Figure 3.3).5 In women, five-year survival ranges from 86% to 40% in the same age groups.

Figure 3.3: Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (C82-C85), Five-Year Net Survival by Age, England, 2007-2011

surv_5yr_age_nhl.swf

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A similar pattern is seen for survival by subtype in the HMRN region, with lower rates in older patients and higher rates in younger patients for the four main NHL subtypes (data not shown).4

Unlike many other cancers, survival for older people with NHL has improved in recent years and this pattern is expected to continue. The latest predictions from the US indicate that almost 8 in 10 60-64 year-olds diagnosed with NHL in 2008-2012 will survive their disease for at least five years, and around 5 in 10 people diagnosed at age 80 or older are expected to survive their NHL for at least five years.6

section reviewed 08/12/14
section updated 08/12/14

Trends over time

As with most cancers, survival for NHL (all subtypes combined) is improving. Some of the increase is likely to be attributable to changes in the diagnosis, classification and registration of NHL, so interpretation of these trends should be undertaken with caution.

One-year age-standardised net survival for NHL in men has increased from 49% during 1971-1972 to 80% during 2010-2011 in England and Wales – an absolute survival difference of 30 percentage points (Figure 3.4).1 In women, one-year survival has increased from 50% to 79% over the same time period (a difference of 30 percentage points).

Figure 3.4: Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (C82-C85), Age-Standardised One-Year Net Survival, Adults (Aged 15-99), England and Wales, 1971-2011

surv_1yr_nhl.swf

Download this chart XLS (46KB) PPT (127KB) PDF (54KB)

Five- and ten-year survival has increased by an even greater amount than one-year survival since the early 1970s. Five-year age-standardised net survival for NHL in men has increased from 30% during 1971-1972 to a predicted survival of 68% during 2010-2011 in England and Wales – an absolute survival difference of 39 percentage points (Figure 3.5).1 In women, five-year survival has increased from 31% to 70% over the same time period (a difference of 39 percentage points).

Figure 3.5: Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (C82-C85), Age-Standardised Five-Year Net Survival, Adults (Aged 15-99), England and Wales, 1971-2011

surv_5yr_nhl.swf

Download this chart XLS (46KB) PPT (127KB) PDF (54KB)

Five-year survival for 2010-2011 is predicted using an excess hazard statistical model

Ten-year age-standardised net survival for NHL in men has increased from 22% during 1971-1972 to a predicted survival of 62% during 2010-2011 in England and Wales – an absolute survival difference of 41 percentage points (Figure 3.6).1 In women, ten-year survival has increased from 22% to 64% over the same time period (a difference of 42 percentage points). Overall, more than 6 in 10 people diagnosed with NHL today are predicted to survive their disease for at least ten years.

Figure 3.6: Non Hodgkin Lymphoma (C82-C85), Age-Standardised Ten-Year Net Survival, Adults (Aged 15-99), England and Wales, 1971-2011

surv_10yr_nhl.swf

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Ten-year survival for 2005-2006 and 2010-2011 is predicted using an excess hazard statistical model

section reviewed 08/12/14
section updated 08/12/14

By stage at diagnosis

Patients who are diagnosed with NHL at an early stage have a much better prognosis than those who present with more extensive disease (Figure 3.4).7 HMRN data indicate that 70% of patients diagnosed at Stage I are alive five years after diagnosis, compared with 58% of patients with advanced disease (Stage IV). The impact of stage at diagnosis on five-year survival varies by subtype: for FL, diagnosis at Stage I and Stage IV confers survival figures of 91% and 79%, respectively; for DLBCL the survival difference by stage is more marked, with Stage I and Stage IV survival of 63% and 46%, respectively.

Figure 3.7: Non Hodgkin Lymphoma, Main Subtypes, Five-Year Crude Survival, By Stage at Diagnosis, All Ages, HMRN, 2004-2011

surv_crude_nhl_substypes.swf

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Very few MCL cases diagnosed at Stage I or II therefore data on this subtype not included in this figure

section reviewed 23/05/13
section updated 23/05/13

In Europe

The most recent Europe-wide five-year survival data for NHL (all subtypes combined) in 1995-1999 show England is slightly below the average for Europe (55%). Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are also lower than the European average.8 Across the European countries, five-year survival ranges from 44% to 63%. However, as with international incidence estimates, differing data collection practices throughout Europe may contribute to the ranking of individual countries.

section reviewed 23/05/13
section updated 23/05/13

By socio-economic variation

The most recent England-wide data for 2004-2006 showed NHL (all subtypes combined) three-year survival for men were significantly lower in the most deprived areas than in the most affluent (60% versus 65%). For women, the deprivation gap was not significant (61% versus 68%).9 However, a similar study from Scotland for 1996-2000 did not find any significant differences in survival by deprivation.10 Rates of emergency presentation with NHL were significantly higher in the most deprived areas than in the most affluent, a study of patients in England in 2006-2008 found;11 however a previous study found socio-economic status did not appear to be associated with delays in NHL diagnosis.12

section reviewed 23/05/13
section updated 23/05/13

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References for non-Hodgkin lymphoma survival

  1. Cancer Research UK Cancer Survival Group, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Personal communication, 2014.

  2. ISD Scotland. Trends in Cancer Survival 1983-2007.
  3. Northern Ireland Cancer Registry. Incidence & Survival 1993-2012.
  4. Haematological Malignancy Research Network (HMRN). Personal communication, 2013.
  5. Office for National Statistics. Statistical Bulletin: Cancer survival in England: Patients diagnosed 2007-2011 and followed up to 2012. Newport: ONS; 2013.
  6. Pulte D, Gondos A, Brenner H. Expected long-term survival of older patients diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma in 2008–2012. Cancer Epidemiol 2012;36:e19-e25.
  7. Haematological Malignancy Research Network (HMRN). Personal communication.
  8. Sant M, Allemani C, Santaquilani M, et al. EUROCARE-4.Survival of cancer patients diagnosed in 1995-1999. Results and commentary. Eur J Cancer 2009;45:931-91.
  9. Rachet B, Ellis L, Maringe C, et al. Socioeconomic inequalities in cancer survival in England after the NHS cancer plan. Brit J Cancer 2010;103:446-53.
  10. Shack LG, Rachet B, Brewster DH, et al. Socioeconomic inequalities in cancer survival in Scotland 1986-2000. Brit J Cancer 2007;97:999-1004.
  11. National Cancer Intelligence Network. Routes to Diagnosis, 2006-2008: NCIN information supplement. London: NCIN; 2012.
  12. Neal RD, Allgar VL. Sociodemographic factors and delays in the diagnosis of six cancers: analysis of data from the "National Survey of NHS Patients: Cancer". Brit J Cancer 2005;92:1971-5.
Updated: 8 December 2014