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This year, an estimated 6,070 people of all ages (3,350 men and boys and 2,720 women and girls) in the United States will be diagnosed with ALL. About one-third of these will be adults. ALL is much more common in children, especially those younger than 5. An estimated 1,430 deaths (820 men and boys and 610 women and girls) will occur this year; about four out of five of these deaths will be among adults.
Advances in treatment have resulted in a dramatic improvement in survival over the past three decades for people with ALL. The five-year survival rate (percentage of people who survive at least five years after the cancer is detected, excluding those who die from other diseases) of people of all ages with ALL increased from 41% for those diagnosed from 1975-1977 to 68% for those diagnosed from 2002-2008. During the same time, the five-year survival rate increased from 58% to 91% among children. It is important to note that survival depends on several factors, including biologic features of the disease and the age of the person.
Cancer survival statistics should be interpreted with caution. These estimates are based on data from thousands of people with this type of cancer in the United States each year, but the actual risk for a particular individual may differ. It is not possible to tell a person how long he or she will live with ALL. Because the survival statistics are measured in five-year intervals, they may not represent advances made in the treatment or diagnosis of this cancer. Learn more about understanding statistics.
Statistics adapted from the American Cancer Society’s publication, Cancer Facts & Figures 2013 and the ACS website.
Last Updated: February 6, 2013