What is the survival rate for ovarian cancer?

The survival rate for ovarian cancer depends on its stage at the time of diagnosis. Ovarian cancer is the most fatal of all cancers involving a woman's reproductive tract. Most ovarian cancer develops after menopause, and about half of ovarian cancers occur in women over age 60.

Unfortunately, only 15% of ovarian cancers are diagnosed at an early stage, when the disease is confined to the ovary and is most easily treated. Women diagnosed in the early stages have an 89% to 94% chance of surviving at least five years.

About 75% of women with ovarian cancer survive one year after diagnosis, and 46% survive five years after being diagnosed. The survival rate drops as the stage of the cancer increases, with an 18% five-year survival rate in women whose cancer has spread beyond the abdomen. Younger women (under age 65) have a better five-year survival rate than older women.
David A. Fishman, MD
Gynecologic Oncology
Women who are diagnosed with early stage ovarian cancer (stages I to II) have five-year survival rates that range from 57% to 90%. In contrast, the five-year survival rates for patients who are diagnosed with advanced stage disease range from 18% to 45%. Despite advances in surgery and platinum-based chemotherapy the mortality rates of individuals with ovarian cancer remain poor. In the past 40 years, the median five-year survival rate for women with advanced stage cancer has increased from 37% to 46%.

Continue Learning about Ovarian Cancer

If I've Been Diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer, What Should I Ask My Doctor?
If I've Been Diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer, What Should I Ask My Doctor?
Two important questions for your doctor: "What is your experience treating ovarian cancer?" and "What is your approach to treating it?" In this video,...
Read More
How many women die of ovarian cancer every year?
David A. Fishman, MDDavid A. Fishman, MD
Approximately 21,880 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer each year in the U.S. and 13,850 di...
More Answers
How common is ovarian cancer?
Univ. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family MedicineUniv. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family Medicine
According to the American Cancer Society, there are approximately 22,000 new cases of ovarian cancer...
More Answers
The Importance of Ovarian Cancer Research
The Importance of Ovarian Cancer Research

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.