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Life Expectancy of a Breast Cancer Survivor post-Chemo

February 24, 2020

Woman's sillhouette against the setting sun - life expectancy after cancer

Deciding the life expectancy of a breast cancer survivor after chemotherapy or other treatment is not an exact science.

In this article, let us explore some opinions on factors that can affect your survival after cancer treatments.

How can outcomes improve for breast cancer treatment?

Certainly, we know the best outcomes from chemotherapy will result from:

  • starting treatment as soon as possible,
  • using the best possible combination of treatments to eradicate cancer such as surgery, radiotherapy
  • followed by chemotherapy to reduce the risk of cancer coming back
  • If the person was in a reasonably good state of health at the onset of the illness

Despite all this, sometimes cancer will come back – which is why we advocate regular monitoring to promote life expectancy.

Monitoring is performed for instance with scans for early detection so that treatment can be resumed, targeting any new cells.

Predicting Breast Cancer Recurrence

Sometimes scientists use computer programs to predict life expectancy.

In other words, they consider factors that can affect life expectancy like the number of years before recurrence of cancer.

For instance, this depends on factors like age, post-menopause, family history, hormone treatment, the general state of health and wellbeing of the individual, etc

Regardless, it’s not possible to be sure that breast cancer will never come back.

And, this is why we say predictions are not an exact science.

Treatment for breast cancer will be successful for most people who are treated early, and the risk of early is less as well.

Cancer Recurrence, unfortunately, can happen even many years after treatment, so no one can say with certainty when it may come back.

Predicting Life Expectancy – Conclusion

Above all, managing breast cancer relies on early detection through monitoring and early treatment.

In other words, this monitoring begins with knowing your family history and carrying out regular breast self-examination.

This can help promote life expectancy, too.

Learn about how genes are involved in breast cancer development in the next article on this topic.

More Reading


Edited by AskAwayHealth Team


All AskAwayHealth articles are written by practising  Medical Practitioners on a wide range of health care conditions to provide evidence-based guidance and to help promote quality health care. The advice in our material is not meant to replace the management of your specific condition by a qualified health care practitioner.
To discuss your condition, please contact a health practitioner or reach us directly through

Credit – Photo by Miguel Bruna on Unsplash

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