Cancer of Unknown Primary: Statistics

January 24, 2018

Cancer of Unknown Primary: Statistics

What are statistics?

Some people use numbers called statistics to figure out their chances of getting cancer. Or they use them to try to figure out their chance of being cured. Because no 2 people are alike, statistics can’t be used to predict what will happen to 1 person. The statistics below describe large groups of people. They do not take into account a person's own risk factors, such as family history, behaviors, or cancer screenings. If you have questions, talk with your healthcare provider.

What are statistics for cancer of unknown primary?

Here are some statistics about cancer of unknown primary origins:

  • Cancer of unknown primary is often called CUP. Having CUP means that your healthcare provider is not able to find where the cancer first started. This is called the primary site.

  • About 31,810 cases of CUP will be diagnosed in 2018 in the U.S. 

  • It’s estimated that CUP represents about 2% of all cancers. The exact numbers are unknown because in some cases of CUP, the primary site is found. Better medical tests may decrease the number of cases of CUP in the future.


Source: American Cancer Society


January 24, 2018

Reviewed By:  

Cunningham, Louise, RN,Gersten, Todd, MD,Stump-Sutliff, Kim, RN, MSN, AOCNS