Mesothelioma: Statistics

This section has been reviewed and approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 05/2014

ON THIS PAGE: You will find information about how many people learn they have this type of cancer each year and some general survival information. Remember, survival rates depend on several factors. To see other pages, use the menu on the side of your screen.

It is estimated that about 3,000 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma each year in the United States. Mesothelioma occurs more often in men, and two-thirds of people with mesothelioma are older than 65.

Mesothelioma rates are no longer increasing as they were in previous decades and may now be decreasing. The average survival time is the amount of time people who survive after the cancer is detected, excluding those who die from other diseases. The average survival time of people with mesothelioma is between 12 and 21 months. However, cancer survival statistics should be interpreted with caution. It is important to note that the length of time a person lives after being diagnosed with mesothelioma depends on a many factors, including the type of mesothelioma. In particular, some patients with peritoneal mesothelioma have a tumor that grows very slowly. Overall, it is estimated that 5% to 10% of people with mesothelioma live at least five years after the diagnosis.

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 mesothelioma. 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.

Source: American Cancer Society

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