Appendix Cancer: Statistics

Approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 08/2018

ON THIS PAGE: You will find information about how many people are diagnosed with appendix cancer each year. You will also learn some general information on surviving the disease. Remember, survival rates depend on several factors. Use the menu to see other pages.

Primary appendix cancer is cancer that starts in the appendix. This is uncommon, accounting for about 0.5% of all tumors that start in the GI tract.

The 5-year survival rate tells you what percent of people live at least 5 years after the cancer is found. Percent means how many out of 100. The 5-year survival rate for people with appendix cancer depends on many factors, including the stage of disease at time of diagnosis, type of appendiceal tumor (see Types of Appendix Tumors in the Introduction section), and size.

In appendix neuroendocrine tumors, if the tumor size is less than 3 centimeters, without spreading to another part of the body, the 5-year survival is about 100%. If the tumor is less than 3 centimeters and has spread to the regional lymph nodes, the 5-year survival is 78%. If the tumor is larger than 3 centimeters, with or without spreading to other parts of the body, the 5-year survival is also 78%.  If the cancer has spread to other parts of the body, the 5-year survival rate is 32%. 

Due to the rare nature of other types of appendix cancer, specific statistics are not available. Talk with your doctor about the factors related to your specific diagnosis.

It is important to remember that statistics on how many people survive appendix cancer are an estimate. The estimate comes from data based on thousands of people with this cancer in the United States. So, your own risk may be different. Doctors cannot say for sure how long anyone will live with appendix cancer. Also, experts measure the survival statistics every 5 years. This means that the estimate may not show the results of better diagnosis or treatment available for less than 5 years. Learn more about understanding statistics.

Source: Up to Date and the National Cancer Institute.

The next section in this guide is Risk Factors.  It explains the factors that may increase the chance of developing appendix cancer. You may use the menu to choose a different section to read in this guide.