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Breast cancer survival rates?

11 Oct 2020 21:08

Hi everyone


I was diagnosed with lobular breast cancer and initially told it was stage 1.  There was another area of calcification which also turned out to be cancerous so I think the stage probably changed although I was too frightened to ask.  I had a mastectomy with reconstruction.  The pathology report 2 weeks later confirmed my lymph nodes were clear and everything found was grade 1.  It was also discovered that there was only one area of cancer, it was quite large 6 cms but mostly was precancerous LCIS.  


I was told by my surgeon and also the breast care nurse that I would need radiotherapy and also tamoxifen for 10 years.  I also had to speak to an oncologist to help plan my treatment.


The oncologist went on to tell me that my survival rate for the next 5 years was 88%, at least I think he was talking survival, it may have been recurrance?  I’m not sure as it’s all so much to take in.  Are these good odds?  Should I be pleased about this?  I honestly don’t know what to think anymore. He also said this percentage could go up to 90 if I opted for ovarian injections to stop oestrogen being produced.  I decided against this as I am 53 and feel that a natural menopause can’t be far away now.

I’m just in a bit of a spin and looking for any advice or thoughts on all of this.  I’m just so scared and overwhelmed with everything and I can’t let my family see how frightened I am. 


I was too scared to ask what the 10 year survival would be, and I don’t think I’m up to looking it up myself.


Trying to be positive but any help greatly appreciated! Xx

Breast cancer survival rates?

12 Oct 2020 02:15 in response to Pinkrose12

Hi Pinkrose12


From reading your post, I take it your Stage 1, grade 1 ER+ HER2 - ?

Depending on where you look,  the survival rate for stage 1 is between 96% - 99%, grade 1 BC is a slow growing cancer - which is good.

I'm not sure why your oncologist has suggested ovarian injections, I had Stage 1, grade 2 BC and ovarian injections were never mentioned. I was prescribed tamoxifen to reduce estrogen and post menopause was prescribed Anastrozole, which I take for 5 years.

There are a couple of calculators that work out survival rate and also recurrence rate but I found then too generic as they don't take all personal factors into consideration. e.g my BC

5 year survival = 97%

10 years = 93%

15 years = 88%


according to Predict


but predict doesn't take into account radiotherapy, so yours should come in higher survival % than mine. 

If I were you I wouldn't be worrying myself and getting too hung up about this. You've got through the worse so I would try and get on and live life. x





Breast cancer survival rates?

12 Oct 2020 08:20 in response to Pinkrose12

Hi Pinkrose12,

They are great odds! You will be very unlucky to die of breast cancer or even to have a recurrence. 
It's normal to be scared, though. We would like to have a 100% survival rate. But that doesn't exist, except for a small number of cancers. Over time you fears will decrease, even if routine scans remain stressful. You will be fine. xx Harry

Breast cancer survival rates?

12 Oct 2020 10:34 in response to Magpiemaggie

Hi Magpiemaggie

thanks so much for your reply.


I was told stage 1 after my first biopsy which was on the lump which I found.  The mammogram showed an area of calcification which was biopsied a few weeks later and also showed up some cancer cells.

The pathology report didn’t mention stage after my surgery, only grade but it did confirm that the lump and the calcification were not separate areas, but were in fact joined together with precancerous cells,LCIS.

The area was 6.4 cms, which although mostly precancerous is quite large, and I think this may have changed the stage to possibly 2b?  Not been confirmed of course as I’m too much of a coward to ask. The large area did not show up on either the mammogram or MRI.

i think the oncologist wanted to give me the option of ovarian injections as I’m not menopausal yet.  He did say it was entirely up to me but I don’t think a natural menopause can be too far away now.

thanks again for taking the time to respond and also for the links it’s so kind xx

Breast cancer survival rates?

12 Oct 2020 10:38 in response to Harry2

Thanks so much Harry2, that makes me feel so much better!  When I was first told stage 1, that was what I relayed to all my family, and it made them feel so much better, that it was all very early stages.  I didn’t tell them that the pathology showed a much larger area after surgery.  Anyway it’s all gone, just the radiotherapy to come.

Thanks again for your positivity x 


Breast cancer survival rates?

12 Oct 2020 16:55 in response to Pinkrose12



I had bilateral DCIS LCIS invasive ductal and invasive lobular and Stage 1, I had 7.6 cm and 6.7 cm grade 2. So doubt your anything but stage 1. Aso LCIS is not precancer they are just a warning that there could be an increased risk of cancer in the future.

Breast cancer survival rates?

23 Jun 2022 01:07 in response to Magpiemaggie


I am 28 years old and been diagnosed today with ductal breast cancer after finding a lump (2cm) and calfiications showing up on my mammogram , I have been told I need to  get a mri on my breast and another bi opsy but this time on my calfiications instead of the lump. I start chemo in  3 weeks and go once every 3 weeks for 4 months. I am out myself with worry after reading lots of posts on this forum about most people just being taken in to get the lump removed or breast removed so concerned why I am being sent for chemotherapy first?

Has anybody experienced this? 

My doctor said she is hoping to shrink it as much as possible before the date for surgery but my mind is exploding worrying that what if it spreads and have I been given wrong advise. Should I push for surgery then chemo? 
I have a 18 month old baby girl so need to give this all I have. The Dr said its Early breast cancer grade 2 but I have no other family or friends who has been through this giving my age. I am really reaching out for any advise or help along this long road ahead to get me through. 

Any advise at all or to help me fight this is so much appreciated 

Breast cancer survival rates?

24 Jun 2022 21:44 in response to Mac2955

Hi mac2955

Welcome to the forum, sorry you're having to go through this at such a young age.

I think you need to trust the consultant, you probably need chemo first due to the type of breast cancer you have rather than the grade, do you know which type you have ? e.g. Her2 positive, triple negative or estrogen positive. Were your lymph nodes clear ?  Breast cancer can be quite complex in its make up. 

There are plenty of woman on here who had to go through chemo before surgery so it's not unusual.

My sons ex teacher got breast cancer at your age. Her daughter was 8 months old. She had chemo first then a lumpectomy, she has been cancer free since (6 years) and doing well.

My advice is to focus on getting the end of treatment, how good that is going to feel like, no more waking up in the morning worrying about cancer and let the breast team do all the work to get you to that point - and they will and you will come out the other end x