What Is the Prognosis for Patients With Pancreatic Tumors?

Although the average survival rate of people with pancreatic tumors is rising, the median one-year survival rate of all types and stages of pancreatic cancer is only 20 percent, according to Hirshberg Foundation. This is because most pancreatic cancers are caught only after they have spread.

Similarly, the five-year survival rate for people with pancreatic cancer is only 6 percent, states the Hirshberg Foundation. In people who are able to have a procedure done called resection, the average five-year survival rate climbs as high as 25 percent. As of 2015, it also seems that the size of the cancer affects survival rates, with larger tumors lowering one's prognosis, though people with large tumors who have undergone surgery have been cured in the past.

Patients suffering from exocrine pancreatic cancer also have a much lower prognosis, with the average five-year survival rate of those with stage 1 cancer around 14 percent, states the American Cancer Society. This figure drops as the cancer develops, dropping down to 1 percent when reaching stage 4. However, people diagnosed with pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors who are able to receive surgery have a much better prognosis, with 61 percent of people surviving five years or longer when the cancer is in its first stage.