Pediatric Cancer Case Study

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As cancer incidence rates rise internationally, a larger percent of patients require research through clinical trials and treatments to cure their cancer. The National Cancer Institute, the primary federal agency for cancer research in the United States, defines cancer as “a collection of related diseases… [in which] some of the body’s cells begin to divide without stopping and spread into surrounding tissues” (“What Is Cancer?”). Cancer is the leading cause of death for children ages 0 to 19 in the U.S. In 2015, researchers predict that doctors will diagnose at least 15,700 children with cancer, and the number of diagnoses will continue to increase by .6 percent in the next year (“Childhood and Adolescent Cancer Statistics”, 6). Approximately …show more content…
The harsh therapies available today callus parts of the brain that impede regular activity and cause “neuropsychological problems, sensory and motor deficits, and speech/language disorders” (Murdoch, 21). These reactions prevent the normalcy that the children yearn for after the physical and psychological traumas of cancer. Also, children who have endured chemotherapy have a higher chance of cardiovascular issues later in life. According to a study done by Mulrooney, an expert on pediatric cancer, “[children] treated [for cancer] between 1970 and 1986 are more likely than their siblings to report congestive heart failure, myocardial infarction, pericardial disease, and valvular abnormalities in young adult life” (Jenney, 3). These delayed reactions can significantly decrease the life expectancy of these individuals and counteract the measures used to treat cancer. To further destroy any hope of regularity, there is a 5 percent chance that the cancer will return in a couple of years or that a secondary cancer will occur due to the radioactive therapy. When the cancer returns, it is more aggressive and does not respond to the same treatment as well. To hinder both the short-term and long-term effects of cancer and its treatments, doctors must discover ways to help patients without exposing their bodies to dangerous chemicals. Due to sparse research, many physicians administer adult doses to children. Treatment centers need funds from generous donors to find less harmful treatments for children’s smaller bodies that still destroy cancer

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