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Survival statistics for neuroblastoma

Survival statistics for neuroblastoma are very general estimates and must be interpreted very carefully. These statistics are based on the experience of groups of children and cannot be used to predict a particular child’s chances of survival.

There are many different ways to measure and report cancer survival statistics. Your child’s doctor can explain the statistics for neuroblastoma and what they mean for your child.

Observed survival

Observed survival is also called overall survival. It is the percentage of children with a certain type of cancer who are expected to live for at least a specified period of time after their diagnosis. Doctors often use observed survival rate when they talk about a prognosis.

The 5-year observed survival for neuroblastoma in children 0–14 years of age is 81%. This means that, on average, 81% of children diagnosed with neuroblastoma are expected to live at least 5 years after their diagnosis.

Observed survival does not consider the cause of death. But of the 19% of children who don’t survive 5 years, most die from the cancer rather than from other causes.

Survival by risk group

Survival varies with each risk group of neuroblastoma. The following factors can also affect survival for neuroblastoma.

  • Generally, the earlier neuroblastoma is diagnosed and treated, the better the outcome.
  • Generally, younger children with neuroblastoma have a better outcome.

There are no specific Canadian statistics available for the different risk groups of neuroblastoma. The following information comes from a variety of sources. It may include statistics from other countries that are likely to have similar outcomes as Canada.

Neuroblastoma survival
Risk group or stage5-year observed survival


greater than 95%






Questions about survival

Talk to your child’s doctor about their prognosis. A prognosis depends on many factors, including:

  • the child’s medical history
  • the type of cancer
  • the stage
  • certain characteristics of the cancer
  • the treatments chosen
  • how the cancer responds to treatment

Only a doctor familiar with these factors can put all of this information together with survival statistics to arrive at a prognosis.


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