Illness risk for cancer survivors

Children who survive cancer are more likely to be chronically ill in later life

Patients who survive cancer in childhood are at greatly increased risk of developing chronic health problems in later life, according to a large US study.  

It showed they were more likely to develop second cancers, cardiovascular disease and severe musculoskeletal problems than other adults.  

The study included 10,397 patients aged 18 to 48 who were diagnosed with childhood cancer between 1970 and 1986, and 3,034 of their siblings.  

The researchers compared the frequency of chronic conditions in the cancer survivor group with the sibling group.  

At an average age of 26 years, the cancer survivors were 3.3 times as likely as their siblings to have a chronic health problem, and more than eight times as likely to have a life-threatening condition.  

Over 62 per cent of the cancer survivors reported at least one chronic illness, with nearly 28 per cent reporting a life-threatening or disabling condition.  

They were 54 times as likely as their sibling to have had a major joint replacement, 15 times as likely to have congestive heart failure or a second malignant neoplasm and more than 10 times as likely to suffer severe cognitive dysfunction or CHD.  

The researchers concluded that continuing care for childhood cancer patients needed to be improved. They should be monitored for second cancers and coronary artery disease. 

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins


Already registered?

Sign in

Just published

Hospital entrance

NHS England issues warning over norovirus and rising winter pressures

Almost three times as many people were in hospital with norovirus last week compared...

BMA Northern Ireland GP committee chair Dr Alan Stout

Northern Ireland GPs face deepest-ever crisis as practices hand back contracts

Northern Ireland's GP leader has warned that general practice in the region is facing...

GP consulting room

GP appointments hit record high of over 34m in October

GP practices delivered a record 34.3m appointments in October this year excluding...

GP consultation

New contract that enforces continuity would make GPs and patients safer, says watchdog

A new GP contract that makes continuity of care an 'essential requirement' for practices...

GP receptionist on the phone

Some practices to receive funding to upgrade digital phone systems

GP practices whose digital phone systems do not meet new NHS England standards will...

Woman using mobile phone

Safety issues with remote GP consultations 'extremely rare', study shows

Safety incidents are 'extremely rare' in remote GP consultations but risk is higher...