Prognosis and Survival Rate of Liver Cancer


The prognosis for liver cancer majorly relies on several aspects like the size of the liver cancer, lesion numbers, occurrence of the spread elsewhere the liver, surrounding liver cells health and the usual health of the patient. Liver cancer life expectancy too relies on several aspects which explain whether the cancer is curable or not.


As per the American Cancer Society, the 5 year survival rate for different liver cancer stage is 15%. A major reason for the low survival rate is that a lot of people with liver cancer also exhibit other medical conditions like cirrhosis, though the 5 year survival rate varies largely depending on the total spread of the liver cancer.


If the cancer is confined to the liver area, the 5- year survival rate increases to 28% and if the liver cancer has grown and reached to the nearby body organs, the 5-year survival rate is just 7%. Once the cancer is widespread, the survival rate fall to as low as 2 years.


Check out some of the factors for prognostic and predictive life expectancy of liver cancer:


  • Stage
  • Performance status of the patient
  • Functioning of the liver
  • Characteristics of the tumor
  • Type of tumor

Liver cancer Survival Rate as per the Studies


The survival rates are usually based on the patients who are infected with the cancer virus according to the above mentioned factors as per the summarized stages:

  • Localized- states that cancer is limited just to the liver and comprises of stage I, II and III. It is easier to be cured in comparison to the other stages. The 5-year survival rate for this stage of cancer is around 30.5%.
  • Regional- stats that cancer has developed and reached the lymph nodes and comprises of stages III C and IV A. the 5-year survival rate for this stage cancer is just 10.7%.
  • Distant- states that the cancer has widespread to distant tissues or body parts and the stage is same like stage IVB. The 5- year survival rate for this stage of liver cancer is just 3.1%


Usually, the survival rates are greater for those patients who have undergone a surgery to remove their cancer, irrespective of the stage. For instance, studies reveal that patients with smaller tumors who aren’t diagnosed with cirrhosis or any other health issues do well once the cancer is operated. The survival rate for such patients is more than 50%. For patients with initial stage cancer who undergo a liver transplant, their 5- year survival rate ranges from 60 to 70%.


Liver cancer survival rates explain you what sector of people with similar kind and stage of cancer are alive for a certain period of time, (basically 5 years) after being diagnosed. The numbers do not give you the surety of the number of years you’re going to live, but definitely give you a better understanding of how effective the treatment will be for you. While some cancer patients wish to know the survival rate for their stage and cancer type, others don’t. It is completely their viewpoint!