American Cancer Society researchers’ 2014 special report on childhood cancer summarizes the progress made and challenges ahead in fighting childhood and adolescent cancers. Explore 10 key facts from the report.
Childhood Cancer Research News
For experts in the field, the topic of childhood cancers evoke both enthusiasm about a story of great progress and frustration with barriers they have yet to overcome. In this Q&A, we invited a roundtable of top childhood cancer experts to share their perspectives on what has been accomplished, what more needs to be done, and on the unique challenges children, adolescents, and young adults with cancer – and their loved ones – face during and after treatment.
Cancer and its treatment come with a host of physical and emotional side effects. These can include symptoms such as nausea, fatigue, and depression. Some side effects may also continue after a patient is finished with treatment. A rapidly evolving and growing field that specializes in addressing these issues – known as palliative care – has taken shape in recent years.
Two recently identified types of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) are extremely difficult to treat with existing drugs. Researchers are trying to figure out why this is and are working to find treatments that will give children with these types of leukemia better outcomes. Read more here.
Dr. Joanne Wolfe has spent her professional career dealing with some of the most emotionally challenging situations a clinician can face: helping children with advanced cancer. The driving force behind her research is a lesson she learned early on. It was, she says, “simply to ask the right question,” and the question she landed on was “whether the quality of care for children with advanced cancer is good enough.”
For the thousands of children and adolescents grappling with cancer, the shock of diagnosis and the complexities of undergoing intensive treatment at such a young age require specialized and highly coordinated care. A social worker trained in pediatric cancer care is frequently the team member who helps children and their families deal with the psychological, financial, and other practical issues that accompany cancer. Learn more here.
Although there has been significant progress in improving treatments and outcomes for children with cancer, there is much more that needs to be done. This was the overarching takeaway from a 2-day Institute of Medicine workshop, convened by the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Policy Forum in Washington D.C. March 9 and 10.