Cancer Facts

It is impossible to measure the impact that childhood cancer has on it’s victims and their families by using statistics but research funding decisions are often based on numbers. Here are some facts about childhood cancer for you to consider:

Cancer Facts• Cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in children and adolescents in the United States. (Source: National Cancer Institute)

  • • Each year in the United States, approximately 13,500 children and adolescents 18 and under are diagnosed with cancer, that’s more than a classroom of kids a day. (Sources: Center for Disease Control and Children’s Oncology Group)

• One out of every 300 males and one out of every 333 females in America will develop cancer before their 20th birthday. (Source: American Society of Clinical Oncology)

•More than 40,000 children undergo treatment for cancer each year. (Source: CureSearch)

• Approximately 20 percent of all children with cancer will die for their disease, asecondary cancer,  or complications from treatment. (National Cancer Institute)

• The causes of most pediatric cancers remain a mystery and cannot be prevented. (American Cancer Society)

• Childhood cancer does not discriminate, sparing no ethnic group, socio-economic class or geographic region. (Source: Centers for Disease Control data)

• About one in 500 young adults is a childhood cancer survivor. Nearly 2/3  of the survivors later experience significant and chronic medical problems or develop secondary cancers as adults that result from the  treatment of their original cancer. (Source: UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital)

•  Incidence of invasive pediatric cancers is up 29% in the past 20 years. (Source: National Cancer Institute)

• In the last 20 years, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved only two pediatric cancer drugs—Clolar (clofarabine) and Erwinaze (asparaginase Erwinia chrysanthemi)—that were initially studied in children. Other drugs for children’s cancers were first studied in or approved for adults with cancer. (American Association for Cancer Research)

• The average age of death for a child with cancer is 8, causing a childhood cancer victim to lose 69 years of expected life years; a significant loss of productivity to society. (Source: Kids V. Cancer)

•Childhood cancer survivors are at significant risk for secondary cancers later in life. (Source: National Cancer Institute)

•Cancer treatments can affect a child’s growth, fertility, and endocrine system. Child survivors may be permanently immunologically suppressed. (Source: National Cancer Institute)

•Radiation to a child’s brain can significantly damage cognitive function, or if radiation is given at a very young age, limiting the ability to read, do basic math, tell time or even talk. (Source: National Cancer Institute)

•Physical and neurocognitive disabilities resulting from treatment may prevent childhood cancer survivors from fully participating in school, social activities and eventually work, which can cause depression and feelings of isolation. (Source: National Cancer Institute)