SEER Stat Fact Sheets: Pancreas Cancer
Mortality and lifetime risk have not been updated to include 2011 data (view details).
Statistics at a GlanceShow More
At a Glance
- Estimated New Cases in 2014 46,420
- Estimated Deaths in 2014 39,590
Number of New Cases and Deaths per 100,000: The number of new cases of pancreas cancer was 12.3 per 100,000 men and women per year. The number of deaths was 10.9 per 100,000 men and women per year. These rates are age-adjusted and based on 2007-2011 cases and 2006-2010 deaths.
Lifetime Risk of Developing Cancer: Approximately 1.5 percent of men and women will be diagnosed with pancreas cancer at some point during their lifetime, based on 2008-2010 data.
Prevalence of this cancer: In 2011, there were an estimated 43,538 people living with pancreas cancer in the United States.
Survival StatisticsShow More
How Many People Survive 5 Years Or More after Being Diagnosed with Pancreas Cancer?
Relative survival statistics compare the survival of patients diagnosed with cancer with the survival of people in the general population who are the same age, race, and sex and who have not been diagnosed with cancer. Because survival statistics are based on large groups of people, they cannot be used to predict exactly what will happen to an individual patient. No two patients are entirely alike, and treatment and responses to treatment can vary greatly.
Based on data from SEER 18 2004-2010. Gray figures represent those who have died from pancreas cancer. Green figures represent those who have survived 5 years or more.
Survival by Stage
Cancer stage at diagnosis, which refers to extent of a cancer in the body, determines treatment options and has a strong influence on the length of survival. In general, if the cancer is found only in the part of the body where it started it is localized (sometimes referred to as stage 1). If it has spread to a different part of the body, the stage is regional or distant. The earlier pancreas cancer is caught, the better chance a person has of surviving five years after being diagnosed. For pancreas cancer, 8.8% are diagnosed at the local stage. The 5-year survival for localized pancreas cancer is 25.8%.
- Localized (9%)
Confined to Primary Site
- Regional (28%)
Spread to Regional Lymph Nodes
- Distant (53%)
Cancer Has Metastasized
- Unknown (10%)
SEER 18 2004-2010, All Races, Both Sexes by SEER Summary Stage 2000
Number of New Cases and DeathsShow More
How Common Is This Cancer?
Compared to other cancers, pancreas cancer is relatively rare.
|Common Types of Cancer||Estimated New
|2.||Breast Cancer (Female)||232,670||40,000|
|3.||Lung and Bronchus Cancer||224,210||159,260|
|4.||Colon and Rectum Cancer||136,830||50,310|
|5.||Melanoma of the Skin||76,100||9,710|
|8.||Kidney and Renal Pelvis Cancer||63,920||13,860|
Pancreas cancer represents 2.8% of all new cancer cases in the U.S.
In 2014, it is estimated that there will be 46,420 new cases of pancreas cancer and an estimated 39,590 people will die of this disease.
Who Gets This Cancer?
Pancreatic cancer is more common with increasing age and slightly more common in men than women. The number of new cases of pancreas cancer was 12.3 per 100,000 men and women per year based on 2007-2011 cases.
Pancreas cancer is most frequently diagnosed among people aged 75-84.
SEER 18 2007-2011, All Races, Both Sexes
- All Races
- Asian /
- American Indian /
SEER 18 2007-2011, Age-Adjusted
Who Dies From This Cancer?
Because survival is poor, the population distribution of people who die of pancreatic cancer is similar to that of people who are diagnosed with the disease. In part because it is difficult to detect early, the average survival time from pancreatic cancer is low. Pancreas cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer death in the United States. The number of deaths was 10.9 per 100,000 men and women per year based on 2006-2010 deaths.
The percent of pancreas cancer deaths is highest among people aged 75-84.
U.S. 2006-2010, All Races, Both Sexes
- All Races
- Asian /
- American Indian /
U.S. 2006-2010, Age-Adjusted
Trends in RatesShow More
Changes Over Time
Keeping track of the number of new cases, deaths, and survival over time (trends) can help scientists understand whether progress is being made and where additional research is needed to address challenges, such as improving screening or finding better treatments.
Using statistical models for analysis, rates for new pancreas cancer cases have not changed significantly over 2002-2011. Death rates have been rising on average 0.4% each year over 2001-2010. 5-year survival trends are shown below the figure.
|5-Year Relative Survival||3.0%||3.3%||3.2%||3.7%||4.7%||3.8%||6.2%||7.3%|
SEER 9 Incidence 1975-2011 & U.S. Mortality 1975-2010, All Races, Both Sexes. Rates are Age-Adjusted.
More About This CancerShow More
Cancer and the Pancreas
The pancreas is an organ in the abdomen that helps the body digest and use the energy that comes from food. Pancreatic cancer occurs when cells in the pancreas grow out of control and form a growth or tumor. Tumors may be cancerous (malignant) or not cancerous (benign).
Here are some resources for learning more about pancreatic cancer.
- About risk factors for pancreatic cancer
- About symptoms and diagnosis of pancreatic cancer
- About treatment options for pancreatic cancer
- About clinical trials
- About cancer prevention
- About the health risks of smoking and ways to quit
All statistics in this report are based on statistics from SEER and the Centers for Disease Control's National Center for Health Statistics. Most can be found within:
Howlader N, Noone AM, Krapcho M, Garshell J, Neyman N, Altekruse SF, Kosary CL, Yu M, Ruhl J, Tatalovich Z, Cho H, Mariotto A, Lewis DR, Chen HS, Feuer EJ, Cronin KA (eds). SEER Cancer Statistics Review, 1975-2011, National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD, http://seer.cancer.gov/csr/1975_2011/, based on November 2013 SEER data submission, posted to the SEER web site, April 2014.
All material in this report is in the public domain and may be reproduced or copied without permission; citation as to source, however, is appreciated.
SEER Cancer Statistics Factsheets: Pancreas Cancer. National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD, http://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/pancreas.html
This factsheet focuses on population statistics that are based on the US population. Because these statistics are based on large groups of people, they cannot be used to predict exactly what will happen to an individual patient. To see tailored statistics, browse the SEER Cancer Statistics Review. To see statistics for a specific state, go to the State Cancer Profiles.
The statistics presented in this factsheet are based on the most recent data available, most of which can be found in the SEER Cancer Statistics Review. In some cases, different year spans may be used. Estimates for the current year are based on past data.
Cancer is a complex topic. There is a wide range of information available. This factsheet does not address causes, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, follow-up care, or decision making, although it provides links to information in many of these areas.