Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Childhood cancer survivors face long-term risk of GI complications, study finds

Date:
October 25, 2010
Source:
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Summary:
People treated for cancer when they were children have a higher-than-average risk of gastrointestinal problems -- some mild, some quite severe -- in the years following treatment, according to a new study.

People treated for cancer when they were children have a higher-than-average risk of gastrointestinal problems -- some mild, some quite severe -- in the years following treatment, according to a study to be presented at the 42nd Congress of the International Society of Paediatric Oncology (SIOP) in Boston on Sunday, Oct. 24.

Investigators at Dana-Farber/Children's Hospital Cancer Center and their colleagues say their findings suggest that childhood cancer survivors and their physicians should be especially aware of the increased likelihood of gastrointestinal troubles and factor them into plans for monitoring survivors' health.

"Current treatments have dramatically increased survival rates for children with cancer, but we know that many cancer therapies -- including surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy -- can cause significant gastrointestinal [GI] complications for patients," says the study's senior author, Lisa Diller, MD, director of the Perini Family Survivors Center at Dana-Farber. "Little is known, however, about the long-term GI consequences for childhood cancer survivors."

To identify such delayed effects, researchers searched for instances of upper GI (esophageal, stomach) problems, liver disorders, and lower GI (intestinal) problems in 14,358 participants in the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study, which tracks the health of children diagnosed with cancer between 1970 and 1986 who survived at least five years after treatment. Rates of GI disorders in these survivors were compared to rates in a randomly selected group of their siblings.

Most of the survivors had received chemotherapy, and about a third had received radiation and/or chemotherapy. Researchers found that the survivors had an elevated risk for upper GI complications such as ulcers, indigestion, heartburn, esophagus problems, nausea, and vomiting; for liver conditions such as cirrhosis, gallstones, and jaundice (and were 24 percent more likely than siblings to have needed a liver biopsy); and for lower GI problems such as colitis, constipation, diarrhea, and intestinal polyps or blockage. In general, survivors who were diagnosed at an older age and had more intensive radiation and/or chemotherapy and more extensive surgery had higher rates of these complications.

These increased risks make it important for survivors to inform their physicians of their earlier cancer treatment, and for physicians to consider whether GI problems are symptoms of a more serious disease in these patients, Diller states. In recent years, pediatric oncologists have worked to develop lower-dose treatments and less invasive surgical procedures to reduce the long-term consequences of childhood cancer therapy, she adds.

The study was funded by a grant from the National Cancer Institute.

The lead author of the study is Robert Goldsby, MD, of the University of California San Francisco Children's Hospital. Co-authors are Shannon Raber, NP, and Linda Li, CRC, UCSF Children's Hospital; Yan Chen, and Yutaka Yasui, PhD, Public Health Services of the University of Alberta, in Edmonton, Canada; Karen Diefenbach, MD, and Nina Kadan-Lottick, MD, MSPH, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Conn; Margarett Shnorhavorian, MD, MPH, Seattle Children's Hospital; Fay Kastrinos, MD, MPH, Columbia University Medical Center, New York; Marilyn Stovall, MPH, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston; Kevin Oeffinger, MD, and Charles Sklar, MD, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York; and Greg Armstrong, MD, MSCE, and Leslie Robison, PhD, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, Tenn.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. "Childhood cancer survivors face long-term risk of GI complications, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 October 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101022093713.htm>.
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. (2010, October 25). Childhood cancer survivors face long-term risk of GI complications, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101022093713.htm
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. "Childhood cancer survivors face long-term risk of GI complications, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101022093713.htm (accessed September 19, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, September 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Cost of Ebola

The Cost of Ebola

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 18, 2014) As Sierra Leone prepares for a three-day "lockdown" in its latest bid to stem the spread of Ebola, Ciara Lee looks at the financial implications of fighting the largest ever outbreak of the disease. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
What HealthKit Bug Means For Your iOS Fitness Apps

What HealthKit Bug Means For Your iOS Fitness Apps

Newsy (Sep. 18, 2014) Apple has delayed the launch of the HealthKit app platform, citing a bug. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.S. Food Makers Surpass Calorie-Cutting Pledge

U.S. Food Makers Surpass Calorie-Cutting Pledge

Newsy (Sep. 18, 2014) Sixteen large food and beverage companies in the United States that committed to cut calories in their products far surpassed their target. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Residents Vaccinated as Haiti Fights Cholera Epidemic

Residents Vaccinated as Haiti Fights Cholera Epidemic

AFP (Sep. 18, 2014) Haitians receive the second dose of the vaccine against cholera as part of the UN's vaccination campaign. Duration: 00:34 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins