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SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

Kevin - None taken, but with all due respect, how do you know the NHS figures are wrong? Do you have a link to the Breast Cancer Research figures (which seem to back up the Cancer Research UK figures, where 10 and 20 year survival rates have been predicted, i.e. they are not actual figures)?

And of course, survival rates are not quite the same as the incidence of secondary diagnoses, which is what the NHS figures relate to. As CornishGirl and Belinda have said, the survival rates include all those living with a metastatic diagnosis; I was diagnosed with primary BC almost 11 years ago now, but have lived with metastatic BC for 7 and a half years. However, I will have been included as a "survivor" in the five and ten year stats. So to get a clearer picture of secondary incidence, all those living with mets would have to be removed from those survivor figures - the two are not the same.

They are also based on "relative survival", so some of the older patients who died of BC may not have been included in those figures as statistically, they could have died of something else if they hadn't had BC. It really isn't that clear cut.

And I don't think anyone who's posted here could be described as a "conspiracy theorist" - we're just people with metastatic breast cancer who are trying to find and make sense of the information which directly affects us.

Hopefully, the men and women who may be distressed by these figures will have more sense than to read a post entitled SCARY STATISTICS in the Secondaries forum.

Macie - I think that older patients are more likely to have more complicated health issues and comorbidities, which mean they may be unable to tolerate more aggressive treatments. And from the recent reports, it seems that many of them present much later. These factors will have a negative impact on survival. I also wonder how many elderly patients choose to decline treatments.

Helen - This NHS document was from 2011, but it doesn't give any information on the source or date of these stats. The 20% with mets at initial diagnosis quoted by your onc is the same figure quoted in that document. So if they're right about that...

Penny - Survival rates in primary BC are consistently high (around 97-8%, I believe), given that the only deaths are due to the thankfully rare cases caused by the treatments themselves. The statistics quoted here relate to metastatic / secondary cancer; the type that kills. I totally agree with the "lies, damned lies and statistics" quote, especially when those statistics deal in half-truths and misinformation.

Sorry to have opened a can of worms here. That certainly wasn't my intention! I was just shocked to see such high figures for secondary diagnoses and genuinely wanted to see if anyone else had read anything along the same lines.

Apologies for the long post.

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

Survival rates in primary breast cancer are a bit varied from source to source.  I'm in the FAST forward radiotherapy clinical trials which is supposed to raise your risk 2% if you are in the test group (I'm  not as it happens) I spoke to my CS who told me normally primary BC is 2-3% local recurrence, but in my case (Grade 2 cancer,NAD in sentinel nodes,) he would have said a lot less.


Before I get too complacent, and remembering friends who were also in low risk groups for cancer,now no longer with us, there are lies, damned lies, and statistics. It is the unknowns both known and unknown that are frustrating, often torturing, us cancer survivors!

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

No I don't,Doctors in this country don't look at a persons age and think oh over 70 lets save a bit of money and give her/him a cheaper type of treatment's look at how well the person is,how she/he would be able to cope with the toxic treatment,I have seen how the NHS has worked over the last two years here at home and where my daughter lives.

My wife broke two toes on Christmas night she was treated with care and compassion in our local A&E,she had a reconstruction operation again was treated with care and compassion and with a fantastic amount of skill by the surgeon.

Last Friday my daughter was taken into hospital with appendicitis she again had the most fantastic treatment mum who is 82 and is suffering with the onset of alzheimers is treated with the utmost respect and with all the latest drugs available.People over the age of 70 sadly in some cases  don't have the strength to fight this horrible disease but nobody will ever convince me that the NHS turns it's back on elderly patients,this is my opinion and how I have seen the NHS work with treated to my family,I really don't want to cause offence to anybody this is not what this site is about, it is all to do with trying to help in a very small way Ladies/Men who are going through a horrendous time will shut up now     

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

Hi,I'm no expert but the NHS information may be on the internet as it's out of date as it's that freedom of information stuff? And old date becomes public,not sure of time scale. My onc told me 20% of patients will have BC & secondaries at time of diagnosis ,myself being one of the 20% . I'm still in my 40s too. I'd had a mammogram 6 months before diagnosis that was clear too! (Family history) Helen xx

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

Yes that's very true, I'm a survivor of ten years but I'm stage 4. So although I'm a survivor at the moment I'm young enough to die from breast cancer not old age. I have only just become eligible for the national screening programme.
Angel falls I will send you a PM.

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

The thing is about those survival rates kevin, is that they include those living with secondary cancer  , so who knows what the real figures are, when survival rates are quoted by Drs , it refers to those that are still alive ,regardless of secondary disease.


A fact that most drs, and public stats , omit to inform people.




Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

Hi does any one think that the reason half of the women dying of BC in the UK are over 70 is because they are not offered the gold star treatment that you get if you are younger x x

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

No offence but they are not correct and the conspiracy theorist who say they are hidden by the Doctors are very wrong and saying things like this could cause distress to Ladies on this site, I reiterate  these stats are wrong these are the correct ones :

48000 Ladies and Gentlemen in the UK are diagnosed with breast cancer 66% of women survive for more than 20 years (last known stats 2001) so that will be higher now,

Five year survival rates are 86% last known stats 2009) so that will be higher now

Ten Year survival rate is 77% (again last known stats 2007 so will be higher now)

More than half of breast cancer deaths in the UK are in Ladies aged over 70. These stats are by Breast Cancer Research they are not here to give false hope, whatever the conspiracy theorist would have you believe, I know who I believe.

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

How interesting!

Kevin - I have seen and quoted those Cancer Research survival figures myself in the past, but given that the NHS has not routinely collected their own data on the incidence of secondary cases in the UK, I wonder why they haven't used the CRUK figures and how they arrived at such high estimates...

Michelle - I agree that many people may find these stats scary, which is why I put SCARY STATISTICS at the start of the subject header. And remember this is part of an NHS report as opposed to an article.

Belinda - Did you read similar figures some time ago or was it relatively recently? If these figures are correct, I really wonder what is to be gained by hiding these figures from the general public...

Makes you think, doesn't it? But I so hope these stats are wrong!

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

We should be concerned... of course... and so should the organization BreastCancerCare... and the general public...

... but I personally think it is important to look at how these statistics change over time.  If they are not improving over the years as new treatments become available, there is something VERY wrong.

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

I understand them to be true Angel. I have read very similar and yes they are usually hidden from the general public.

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

I too thought 45,000 women were diagnosed a year, My oncologist says approx 20% of cases go on to develop secondaries.. I don't believe those figures are correct, and I think this article could frighten many ladies on this site. Michelle x

Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

I think you will find these are  much more accurate and even these are out of date.



Re: SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

I've never seen these figures before, I thought approx 45,000 women a year were diagnosed with BC not 30,000 with 5% having advanced BC at diagnosis.


SCARY STATISTICS Re: Numbers of Metastatic Diagnoses

While researching funding for Faslodex, I came across these figures in an on-line NHS document:

"Approximately 20% of women initially presenting with breast cancer have advanced disease with distant metastases and around 50% of those presenting with early or localized breast cancer will eventually develop metastatic disease."

This was marked "For NHS circulation only - Not for commercial use" (even though it is now in the public domain as it came up on a simple Google search!), and dated September 2011.

If these figures are correct and unless I'm reading this wrong, 60% of all breast cancer diagnoses will result in metastatic disease sooner or later, regardless of stage at diagnosis, treatment, etc. This is far higher than the 30% I'd previously seen quoted. And even for those much-lauded early diagnosis "success" stories that the Pink Brigade love to throw around, it seems it's still a 50-50 crap shoot... Has anybody else ever come across similar figures?