More than 27,000 women in Ireland are living following a breast cancer diagnosis

  • Most women who have small early stage breast cancers and receive the best treatment are alive and well 20 years later
  • Mammographic screening is effective in reducing breast cancer mortality rates in women over 50 - women should participate in breast screening from the age of 50.
  • There is considerable research on breast cancer and treatments are improving all the time. Increasingly treatments can be tailored to the needs of the individual woman

Breast cancer survival

  • was lower in Ireland than the European average (29.3 per 100,000 as opposed to 24.9 per 100,000)
  • Ireland ranked in the upper third of rates in European countries.

Due to lack of standardised cancer registers in many European countries, accurate, up-to-date statistics on breast cancer incidence and mortality are not available and comparative studies are difficult to carry out. EUROPA DONNA is campaigning for the establishment of registers in each country.


Cancer in Ireland1994-2005: a summary. National Cancer Registry of Ireland. 2007

Cancer projections 2005-2035: a summary. National Cancer Registry of Ireland, 2008

Ferlay J et al. Estimates of the cancer incidence and mortality in Europe in 2006. Ann Oncol 2007; 18:581-92

Ferlay J, DM Parkin, E.Stelianova-Foucher  Estimates of cancer incidence and mortality in Europe in 2008  European Jnl of Cancer 2010; 46:765-81

Women and Cancer in Ireland, 1994 - 2001, published by the National Cancer Registry of Ireland and the Women's Health Council in February 2006.

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Irish Breast Cancer Charter9 things you should know about breast cancer (PDF 478KB)