Stage at Diagnosis

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In 2017, the rate of new regional and distant stage breast cancer cases was 42.3 per 100,000 females.

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Introduction

Cancers can be diagnosed at different stages in their development. Stage of cancer diagnosis may be expressed as numbers (for example, I, II, III, or IV) or by terms such as “localized,” “regional,” and “distant.” The lower the number or the more localized the cancer, the better a person’s chances of benefiting from treatment.

Tracking the rates of late-stage (distant) cancers is a good way to monitor the impact of cancer screening. When more cancers are detected in early stages, fewer should be detected in late stages.

Both rates of late stage disease and stage proportions are provided below since each has a somewhat different interpretation. For example, rates could be declining among all stages of disease, but the proportion of late stage disease among diagnosed cases could be relatively constant.

Measure

Late-stage diagnosis rate: The number of new cancer cases diagnosed at a distant stage per 100,000 people per year for cancers of the prostate, lung and bronchus, colon, rectum, and cervix uteri. Late stage is defined as regional and distant stage diagnoses, per 100,000 women per year for cancer of the female breast.

Stage Distribution:  The proportion of new cancer cases among all cases diagnosed in a specific year.  The full distribution of all stages (local, regional, distant and unstaged/unknown) is shown.

Healthy People 2020 Target

  • Healthy People 2020 has only one target for late-stage diagnoses: to reduce the number of new late-stage female breast cancer cases to 42.1 per 100,000 females.  Healthy People 2020 also includes targets for increasing the proportion of adults who are screened for cervical, colorectal, and breast cancer, and for increasing the proportion of men who are counseled about prostate-specific screening tests. These screenings may increase the proportion of adults whose cancer is detected in its early stage.

Healthy People 2020 is a set of goals set forth by the Department of Health and Human Services.
Note: Goals are indicated as blue line on Detailed Trend Graphs.

Data Source

SEER Program, National Cancer Institute, 2000–2017.

Trends and Most Recent EstimatesHelp with navigating the graphs and data tables

Late Stage Breast Cancer Rates

Rates of new cases of late stage breast cancer, delay-adjusted incidence, 2000-2017
Overview Graph Detailed Trend Graphs Most Recent Estimates (2017)
Delay Rate per 100,000 95% Confidence Interval
Thumbnail of graph for Rates of new cases of late stage breast cancer, delay-adjusted incidence, 2000-2017 Late Stage Breast CancerClick to see the detailed trend graph for Late Stage Breast Cancer 42.3 41.8 - 42.8

Distant Stage Cancer Rates

Rates of new cancers of distant stage diseases, delay-adjusted incidence, 2000-2017
Overview Graph Detailed Trend Graphs Most Recent Estimates (2017)
Delay Rate per 100,000 95% Confidence Interval
Thumbnail of graph for Rates of new cancers of distant stage diseases, delay-adjusted incidence, 2000-2017 ColonClick to see the detailed trend graph for Colon 5.7 5.6 - 5.9
RectumClick to see the detailed trend graph for Rectum 1.6 1.5 - 1.7
Cervix UteriClick to see the detailed trend graph for Cervix Uteri 1.1 1.0 - 1.2
Lung and BronchusClick to see the detailed trend graph for Lung and Bronchus 24.6 24.3 - 24.9
ProstateClick to see the detailed trend graph for Prostate 10.6 10.3 - 10.9

Stage Distribution

Female Breast Cancer
Distribution of female breast cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017
Overview Graph Detailed Trend Graphs Most Recent Estimates (2017)
Percent of diagnoses 95% Confidence Interval
Thumbnail of graph for Distribution of female breast cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017 LocalizedClick to see the detailed trend graph for Localized 65.6 57.5 - 73.8
Regional/DistantClick to see the detailed trend graph for Regional/Distant 32.4 24.3 - 40.4
Unstaged/UnknownClick to see the detailed trend graph for Unstaged/Unknown 2.3 0.0 - 4.9
Lung Cancer
Distribution of lung cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017
Overview Graph Detailed Trend Graphs Most Recent Estimates (2017)
Percent of diagnoses 95% Confidence Interval
Thumbnail of graph for Distribution of lung cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017 LocalizedClick to see the detailed trend graph for Localized 25.3 13.3 - 37.4
RegionalClick to see the detailed trend graph for Regional 21.2 9.9 - 32.6
DistantClick to see the detailed trend graph for Distant 48.3 34.5 - 62.1
Unstaged/UnknownClick to see the detailed trend graph for Unstaged/Unknown 5.9 0.0 - 12.5
Colon Cancer
Distribution of colon cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017
Overview Graph Detailed Trend Graphs Most Recent Estimates (2017)
Percent of diagnoses 95% Confidence Interval
Thumbnail of graph for Distribution of colon cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017 LocalizedClick to see the detailed trend graph for Localized 35.5 17.1 - 54.0
RegionalClick to see the detailed trend graph for Regional 37.1 18.5 - 55.7
DistantClick to see the detailed trend graph for Distant 22.4 6.3 - 38.5
Unstaged/UnknownClick to see the detailed trend graph for Unstaged/Unknown 6.1 0.0 - 15.4
Rectum Cancer
Distribution of rectum cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017
Overview Graph Detailed Trend Graphs Most Recent Estimates (2017)
Percent of diagnoses 95% Confidence Interval
Thumbnail of graph for Distribution of rectum cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017 LocalizedClick to see the detailed trend graph for Localized 36.9 5.5 - 68.3
RegionalClick to see the detailed trend graph for Regional 36.9 5.5 - 68.3
DistantClick to see the detailed trend graph for Distant 18.2 0.0 - 43.2
Unstaged/UnknownClick to see the detailed trend graph for Unstaged/Unknown 10.0 0.0 - 29.5
Cervix Uteri Cancer
Distribution of cervix uteri cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017
Overview Graph Detailed Trend Graphs Most Recent Estimates (2017)
Percent of diagnoses 95% Confidence Interval
Thumbnail of graph for Distribution of cervix uteri cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017 LocalizedClick to see the detailed trend graph for Localized 47.4 12.3 - 82.6
RegionalClick to see the detailed trend graph for Regional 33.4 0.2 - 66.6
DistantClick to see the detailed trend graph for Distant 15.7 0.0 - 41.3
Unstaged/UnknownClick to see the detailed trend graph for Unstaged/Unknown 6.5 0.0 - 23.8
Prostate Cancer
Distribution of prostate cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017
Overview Graph Detailed Trend Graphs Most Recent Estimates (2017)
Percent of diagnoses 95% Confidence Interval
Thumbnail of graph for Distribution of prostate cancer diagnoses by stage at diagnosis, 2000-2017 LocalizedClick to see the detailed trend graph for Localized 67.5 58.9 - 76.1
RegionalClick to see the detailed trend graph for Regional 13.0 6.9 - 19.2
DistantClick to see the detailed trend graph for Distant 8.7 3.5 - 13.9
Unstaged/UnknownClick to see the detailed trend graph for Unstaged/Unknown 11.4 5.6 - 17.2

Additional Information on Stage at Diagnosis

For the public

For health professionals

Scientific Reports

Statistics

Year Range

2000-2017

Recent Summary Trend Year Range

2013-2017

Summary Tables

Diagnosis

Recent Summary Trend

Non-Significant Change

Desired Direction

Falling