Vulvar Cancer: Statistics

Approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 12/2016

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

This year, an estimated 5,950 women in the United States will be diagnosed with vulvar cancer. Its incidence is increasing in young women because of its association with the human papillomavirus (HPV). See the Risk Factors and Prevention section for more information on HPV.

It is estimated that 1,110 deaths from this disease will occur this year.

The 5-year survival rate tells you what percent of women live at least 5 years after the cancer is found. Percent means how many out of 100. Survival rates depend on several factors, including the type of vulvar cancer and the stage of disease at the time it is diagnosed.

The 5-year survival rate for cancer that has not spread beyond the vulva is 98% for FIGO surgical stage I and 85% for stage II disease (see Stages for explanation of the FIGO Staging system).  For stage III disease, survival is 74%, and for stage IV is 31%. For cancer that involves a number of lymph nodes in the groin, also known as the inguinal-femoral lymph nodes, the 5-year survival rate is 63% if it has spread, or metastasized, to 1 groin lymph node, 30% for 2 lymph nodes, 19% for 3 lymph nodes, and 13% for 4 or more lymph nodes that are involved with cancer. The survival rate is about 10% if the cancer has spread to a distant part of the body.

It is important to remember that statistics on the survival rates for women with this type of cancer are an estimate. The estimate comes from annual data based on the number of women with this cancer in the United States. Each patient should discuss their specific risk with their doctor. 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.

Statistics adapted from the American Cancer Society's (ACS) publication, Cancer Facts & Figures 2016, and the ACS website.

The next section in this guide is Risk Factors and Prevention. It explains what factors may increase the chance of developing this disease. You may use the menu to choose a different section to continue reading in this guide.