Pediatric Cancer Survivorship
Tung Wynn, MD
Ann Robinson, PA
Pediatric cancer treatment is a major testament to what can be achieved trough modern medicine. The diagnosis of a pediatric cancer has gone from what was commonly considered a death sentence to the current time when almost every childhood cancer is considered curable. And all of this was achieved in barely more than a generation. The number of children cured of their cancer continues to grow everyday. Most childhood cancer survivors in the United States live healthy, productive lives, but some may experience late effects or problems related to cancer or its treatment. The mission of the Pediatric Cancer Survivorship Clinic is to improve the health and well being of pediatric cancer survivors and their families through identification and follow up of medical and psychosocial problems that emerge once treatment has been completed.
Late Effects of Pediatric Cancer Treatments
The treatments available for pediatric cancers include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapeutic medications. The coordinated use of all of these methods of treatment has resulted in an astounding improvement in the survival rates of patients diagnosed with pediatric cancers in the last few decades. As effective as these treatments have been for the cure of pediatric cancers, there are also late effects that may be associated with them. As more and more patients continue to survive beyond their diagnosis, we have improved our understanding of what the risks are for these late effects including what these late effects are, what are the treatments were that may cause them, and who is most at risk for them. Some of the more common late effects might include:
Transitioning into Adulthood