What Is the Survival Rate of Localized Breast Cancer?

Medically Reviewed on 7/7/2022
What Is the Survival Rate of Localized Breast Cancer
The 5-year survival rate for localized breast cancer is 99%, and the condition is very treatable

Localized breast cancer refers to cancer that has not spread to neighboring lymph nodes or other areas of the body. The 5-year survival rate for localized breast cancer is 99%, and the condition is very treatable.

What is breast cancer?

Breast cancer occurs when there is an uncontrolled growth of cells in the breast tissue. It is one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers in women globally and accounts for about 30% of all cancers in women. 

There are two types of breast cancer:

  • In situ breast cancer: In situ breast cancer (carcinoma in situ) is detected in the breast ducts (ductal carcinoma in situ) and has not progressed to the surrounding breast tissue. Noninvasive breast cancer is often detected through mammography and rarely manifests as a breast lump.
  • Invasive breast cancer: Invasive breast cancer occurs when cancer cells move through the duct lining into the surrounding breast tissue. This is the most common type of breast cancer. When breast cancer spreads outside the breast to other areas of the body (such as the liver, lungs, bones, or brain), it is considered metastatic or advanced breast cancer. 

What are symptoms of localized breast cancer?

Localized breast cancer generally does not cause any symptoms. When present, symptoms of breast cancer may include:

Regular breast cancer screening such as mammography can help detect breast cancer before symptoms occur. A tumor is generally seen as a lump on a mammogram.

What are treatment options for localized breast cancer?

Localized breast cancer is classified as either stage 1A or stage 1B, and treatment options may include:


Surgery is the main treatment for localized breast cancer, and it can entirely remove some localized tumors.

Breast-conserving surgery

Breast-conserving surgery is possible if surgeons can remove the tumor along with a margin of healthy tissue surrounding it while leaving enough tissue for the breast to appear as natural as possible.

Radiation therapy

For early stage breast cancer, external beam radiation treatment is an option following breast-conserving surgery. The breast as well as the lymph nodes beneath the arm and around the collarbone are treated. 


Chemotherapy is usually not used to treat stage 1 localized breast cancer. However, if there is a high possibility of cancer returning after surgery, adjuvant therapy may be recommended, which involves chemotherapy.

Hormonal therapy

Hormonal therapy is commonly used to treat hormone receptor-positive (HR+) stage 1 breast cancer.

Tamoxifen is the most often used anti-estrogen hormonal treatment medicine used in both menopausal and postmenopausal women. Aromatase inhibitors are generally given to postmenopausal women. They may be given after tamoxifen therapy or in place of tamoxifen if you are unable to or do not want to take tamoxifen. Common aromatase inhibitors include:


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Medically Reviewed on 7/7/2022
Image Source: iStock image

Treatment of Breast Cancer Stages I-III: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/breast-cancer/treatment/treatment-of-breast-cancer-by-stage/treatment-of-breast-cancer-stages-i-iii.html

Survival Rates for Breast Cancer: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/breast-cancer/understanding-a-breast-cancer-diagnosis/breast-cancer-survival-rates.html