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Friday, January 27, 2023

Childhood cancer: Doctor busts myths around paediatric cancer, reveals facts

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There are many myths about pediatric or childhood cancer that need to be dispelled. Here are a few examples.

The survival rate for pediatric cancer is approximately 80%, but the unsettling reality is that there is very little knowledge regarding pediatric malignancies because the prevalence of juvenile cancer in society is still not being addressed. The majority of the time, pediatric cancers cannot be prevented or found through screening, but if they are, they can be treated with chemotherapy, surgery, and radiotherapy, either separately or in combination, with a cure rate of 80%.

The alarming reality is that pediatric cancer is seldom ever discussed in our nation, and a significant amount of the prevalence of juvenile cancer in the population is still unaddressed. Each type of cancer has different symptoms, but the most common ones across the board include stunted growth, inadequate weight gain, and decreased appetite. Cancer in children is also very different from cancer in adults in many respects.

There are many misconceptions about pediatric cancer that need to be dispelled. Dr. Amit Kumar, a pediatric oncologist at the HCG Cancer Care Center in Mumbai, dispelled some of these misunderstandings and provided the following information in an interview with HT Lifestyle:

Myth1 : Childhood cancer is contagious

That is untrue since, unlike the flu, cancer is not contagious and cannot be spread.

Myth 2: Cancer in children is passed down from parents

Factual statement: Not all childhood malignancies are inherited. In actuality, the majority of children malignancies are caused by random mutation and are unrelated to genetic variations and heredity.

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Myth 3: Children’s malignancies are incurable.

Factual statement: When detected early and treated appropriately, childhood malignancies, like all other types of cancer, are highly curable. That has been made feasible by a number of developments and discoveries in cancer treatment in recent years.

Myth 4: Cancer patients in children live a short time and have a poor quality of life.

Reportedly, children who are treated may live regular lives. Regardless of complications, individuals can still live a regular life with improved quality, much like their peers, depending on the stage and type of care.

Myth 5: Children who have survived cancer do not need to receive follow-up care

It is a fact that people who have survived childhood cancer, like anybody else, should receive frequent follow-up care since, in the absence of it, they run the risk of experiencing complications related to their earlier cancer.

Myth 6: Chemotherapy causes children to lose their hair permanently

Factual statement: A youngster who undergoes chemotherapy will experience temporary hair loss before growing normal hair again.

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