Patients with prostate cancer continue to have excess mortality up to 15 years after diagnosis




  • To estimate the population-based conditional 5-year relative survival rates for patients with prostate cancer (PCa).

Patients and Methods

  • All 98 672 patients, aged 45–89 years, diagnosed in the Netherlands with PCa (clinical T stage 1–4) in the period 1989–2008 were selected from the Netherlands Cancer Registry and followed up until 2010.
  • The conditional 5-year relative survival rate was estimated for every subsequent year of survival up to 15 years after diagnosis.


  • The conditional 5-year relative survival rate decreased with survival time from diagnosis. Excess mortality (conditional 5-year relative survival rate <95%) for patients with clinical T1 stage only became manifest 5 years after diagnosis and increased to almost 10% after 10 years.
  • Patients with more advanced disease (cT2–cT4) were found to have an excess mortality rate of 6–12% at diagnosis, which increased to 15–22% after 10 years.
  • Excess mortality occurred earlier for the older age groups.
  • The 5-year relative survival rate at diagnosis was <90% for all age groups of patients with cT3/cT4 disease and excess mortality for this group increased to >20% for those who had already survived for 5 years since diagnosis.


  • Patients with PCa were found to have excess mortality within 10 years of diagnosis. Excess mortality was found at an earlier timepoint for patients with a more advanced stage and for older age groups.
  • Quantitative insight into conditional survival is useful for caregivers to help plan optimum cancer treatment and surveillance and to inform patients about their actual prognosis during follow-up, taking the current condition of the patient into account.