Pediatric Cancer: Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

3 min read
Pediatric Cancer: Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

Cancer can be fatal if not diagnosed and treated at an early stage. Pedriatric Cancer is the cause of increased mortality rate of children in the developed countries.

According to doctors at Mayo Clinic, cancer is a result of an abnormal growth or multiplication of malignant cells that begin to infiltrate the normal cells or tissues in the human body.

Cancer is the second largest cause of death across the world but with growing innovations and advanced technology there has been a drop in cases due to early screening, diagnosis, various treatment options and prevention measure.

Cancer in children is not common, but some children are at a higher risk of cancer, typically because of inherited genes.

Cancer is not easily detectable since the symptoms in childhood cancer are quite common to those of other common illnesses.


Pediatric Cancer: Causes

According to the US NIH, Cancer is a reason for the rising mortality rate of children in the developed countries.

According to the American Cancer Society, there may be different reasons for pediatric cancer which may be genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors.

Generally, lifestyle of the parents like smoking, stress, alcohol, lack of sleep may be a cause of cancer in their children but it needs further studies to come to a conclusion.

Secondly, harmful radiations in the environment like from the solar system, soil, airport securities, nuclear accidents can be a contributing factor which happens rarely.

One of the main reason of cancer in children is their genes and DNA they inherit from their parents.

Error in genetic mutations can also be a reason for pediatric cancer.

Pedriatic Cancer: Signs and Symptoms 

According to the US NIH, brain tumour, lymphoma and leukemia are the common types of cancer found in children between the age of 0 to 14 years.

Generally, symptoms of childhood cancer are difficult to recognise as they mimic the symptoms of the common illnesses and they may be detected by the parents, relatives or doctors.

Some of the common symptoms of pediatric cancer include:

  • A lump near the breast

  • A non-healing sore

  • Changes in the bowel habits

  • bleeding or unusual discharge

  • hoarseness

  • change in size or colour of a mole

  • digestive issues

  • Continuous headaches and vomiting

  • weightloss

Pediatric Cancer: Diagnosis and Treatment

If you ever detect any of these symptoms for a longer time, you must consult an oncologist immediately.

He will diagnose the root cause of the symptoms and if he feels the child is at the risk of cancer, he will examine the kid with the help of neurological examination, biopsy, imaging and check if the cancer has spread to other parts of the body.

Once it gets confirmed that the child has cancer, there are various options to treat the child and save his life. These include chemotherapy, surgery, radiation therapy or targeted drug therapy.

In a surgery, the tumor is removed from the brain with utmost safety if it is a small tumour and easily accessible.

Chemotherapy is a type of cancer treatment therapy in which the doctor uses certain chemicals kill the cancer cells to prevent it's spread.

In radiation therapy, the radiation is targeted on the tumour to kill the cancer cells directly with the help of the radiation.

Targeted drug therapy helps to target and destroy cancer cells by preventing the flow of blood to the tumour.

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