Study launched into child cancer survivors

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The Dutch Child Oncology Foundation SKION has launched a study into the health of child cancer survivors. The foundation will call up 6000 people in the next three years who suffered child cancer between 1965 and 2000. Doctors hope to find out what health problems child cancer survivors encounter later in life.

In recent years, the chances of surviving cancer in childhood have increased hugely to 80 percent. Forty years ago, only a quarter of patients survived. However, three quarters of survivors encounter health problems later in life. Almost half of them suffer from a serious or fatal disease. The researchers want to find out how to prevent this.

Many former cancer patients develop heart or lung problems, and they have an increased risk of developing cancer again.

At an international congress in Amsterdam on Thursday and Friday, experts will exchange information on the best treatment. SKION hopes to develop international guidelines for treating cancer in children.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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