Prostate Cancer: Statistics

Approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 01/2019

ON THIS PAGE: You will find information about the number of men who are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year. You will also read general information on surviving the disease. Remember, survival rates depend on several factors. Use the menu to see other pages.

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men, except for skin cancer. This year, an estimated 174,650 men in the United States will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. Approximately 60% of cases are diagnosed in men over 65. The average age of diagnosis is 66; the disease rarely occurs before age 40. For unknown reasons, the risk of prostate cancer is about 60% higher in black men than in white men. 

ost prostate cancers (90%) are found when the disease is confined to the prostate and nearby organs. This is referred to as the local or regional stage.

The 5-year survival rate tells you what percent of men live at least 5 years after the cancer is found. Percent means how many out of 100. The 5-year survival rate for most men with local or regional prostate cancer is nearly 100%.

For men diagnosed with prostate cancer that has spread to other parts of the body, the 5-year survival rate is 30%.

Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in men in the United States. It is estimated that 31,620 deaths from this disease will occur this year. However, the death rate has dropped by more than half from 1993 to 2016. A man’s individual survival depends on the type of prostate cancer and the stage of the disease. There are almost 3 million survivors of prostate cancer in the United States today.

It is important to remember that statistics on the survival rates for men with prostate cancer are an estimate. The estimate comes from annual data based on the number of men with this cancer in the United States. Also, experts measure the survival statistics every 5 years. So the estimate may not show the results of better diagnosis or treatment available for less than 5 years. Talk with your doctor if you have any questions about this information. Learn more about understanding statistics.

Statistics adapted from the American Cancer Society's (ACS) publication, Cancer Facts and Figures 2

The next section in this guide is Medical Illustrations. It offers drawings of body parts often affected by prostate cancer. Use the menu to choose a different section to read in this guide.