Parathyroid cancer is quite rare. Most tumors that start in the parathyroid gland are benign, with parathyroid cancer accounting for less than 100 cases per year in the United States. Men and women are equally affected by parathyroid cancer, which generally occurs in middle age.
The overall 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 with parathyroid cancer is 89%, and the ten-year survival rate is 49%. Cancer survival statistics should be interpreted with caution. These estimates are based on data from many people with this type of cancer in the United States, 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 parathyroid cancer. Because the survival statistics are measured in multi-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 and Lawrence Kim, MD, "Parathyroid Carcinoma,"eMedicine. http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/280908-overview#a0199 . Updated 7 December 2011