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Oesophageal cancer survival statistics

One-, five- and ten-year survival statistics for oesophageal cancer by age and trends over time are presented here.

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

 

One-, five- and ten-year survival

44% of men survive oesophageal cancer for at least one year, and this is predicted to fall to 16% surviving for five years or more, as shown by age-standardised net survival for patients diagnosed with oesophageal cancer during 2010-2011 in England and Wales (Table 3.1).1 Survival for women is slightly lower at one year but similar at five years, with 38% surviving for one year or more, and 15% predicted to survive for at least five years.

Table 3.1: Oesophageal Cancer (C15), 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 44.2 15.5 11.8
95% LCL 43.9 13.9 9.2
95% UCL 44.4 17.1 14.8
Women Net Survival 38.4 14.6 12.9
95% LCL 37.8 12.4 9.6
95% UCL 39.0 17.0 16.8
Adults Net Survival 41.9 15.1 12.3
95% LCL 41.6 13.9 10.1
95% UCL 42.2 16.5 14.6

Download this table XLS (32KB) PPT (138KB) PDF (26KB)

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

Oesophageal cancer survival falls only slightly beyond five years after diagnosis, which means most patients can be considered cured after five years. 12% of men and 13% of women are predicted to survive their disease for ten years or more, as shown by age-standardised net survival for patients diagnosed with oesophageal cancer during 2010-2011 in England and Wales (Figure 3.1).1 Out of 20 common cancers in England and Wales, ten-year survival for oesophageal cancer ranks 3rd lowest overall.

Figure 3.1: Oesophageal Cancer (C15), Net Survival up to Ten Years after Diagnosis, Adults (Aged 15-99), England and Wales, 2010-2011

surv_curve_oesophag.swf

Download this chart XLS (45KB) PPT (125KB) PDF (72KB)

Survival for oesophageal cancer 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.

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

 

By age

Five-year survival for oesophageal cancer is generally higher in younger men and women and decreases with increasing age. Five-year net survival in men ranges from 19% in 50-59 year-olds to 4% in 80-99 year-olds for patients diagnosed with oesophageal cancer in England during 2007-2011 (Figure 3.2).4 In women, five-year survival ranges from 27% to 3% in the same age groups.

Figure 3.2: Oesophageal Cancer (C15), Five-Year Net Survival by Age, England, 2007-2011

surv_5yr_age_oesophag.swf

Download this chart XLS (42KB) PPT (123KB) PDF (43KB)

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

Trends over time

As with most cancers, survival for oesophageal cancer is improving. One-year age-standardised net survival for oesophageal cancer in men has increased from 15% during 1971-1972 to 44% during 2010-2011 in England and Wales – an absolute survival difference of 29 percentage points (Figure 3.3).1 In women, one-year survival has increased from 16% to 38% over the same time period (a difference of 23 percentage points).

Figure 3.3: Oesophageal Cancer (C15), Age-standardised One-Year Net Survival, Adults (Aged 15-99), England and Wales, 1971-2011

surv_1yr_oesophag.swf

Download this chart XLS (46KB) PPT (126KB) PDF (54KB)

Five- and ten-year survival has increased by a lesser amount than one-year survival since the early 1970s. Five-year age-standardised net survival for oesophageal cancer in men has increased from 4% during 1971-1972 to a predicted survival of 16% during 2010-2011 in England and Wales – an absolute survival difference of 11 percentage points (Figure 3.4).1 In women, five-year survival has increased from 5% to 15% over the same time period (a difference of 10 percentage points).

Figure 3.4: Oesophageal Cancer (C15), Age-Standardised Five-Year Net Survival, Adults (Aged 15-99), England and Wales, 1971-2011

surv_5yr_oesophag.swf

Download this chart XLS (45KB) PPT (126KB) PDF (54KB)

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

Ten-year age-standardised net survival for oesophageal cancer in men has increased from 3% during 1971-1972 to a predicted survival of 12% during 2010-2011 in England and Wales – an absolute survival difference of 9 percentage points (Figure 3.5).1 In women, ten-year survival has increased from 4% to 13% over the same time period (a difference of 9 percentage points). Overall, more than 1 in 10 people diagnosed with oesophageal cancer today are predicted to survive their disease for at least ten years.

Figure 3.5: Oesophageal Cancer (C15), Age-Standardised Ten-Year Net Survival, Adults (Aged 15-99), England and Wales, 1971-2011

surv_10yr_oesophag.swf

Download this chart XLS (45KB) PPT (126KB) PDF (53KB)

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

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References for oesophageal cancer 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. Office for National Statistics. Statistical Bulletin: Cancer survival in England: Patients diagnosed 2007-2011 and followed up to 2012. Newport: ONS; 2013.
Updated: 8 December 2014