In the United States alone, two of the most common causes of death among children (1-14) are accidents and cancer. Among adolescents (15-19), cancer is the fourth most common cause of death. This year there will be approximately 10,000 children and over 5,000 adolescents who will be affected by cancer. In addition, over 1,500 children and adolescents will lose their lives in their battle against cancer.
Over the past several decades, the rate of children and adolescents diagnosed with cancer was 1 in 285. The American Cancer Society has released their report on cancer statistics finding that number has increased to 1 in 260! This means every moment, every research grant, and every effort counts more than ever for a growing number of children. Which is why only 4% of the National Cancer Institute’s research funding simply isn’t enough.
Differences in Common Cancers for Children vs Adolescents
Every year countless donors, investors, researchers, and doctors work to lower these statistics for both children and adolescents. The reason why children younger than 20 are grouped into two categories is due to their developments. The bodies of a young child and a teenager are vastly different. This means the way tumors within these developing bodies are handled need to be different as well.
There are even different types of cancer that are more common for children vs adolescents and vice versa. For children, acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL) is the most common form of cancer (around 28%). On the other hand, Brain (21%) and Lymphoma (19%) cancers are more commonly found in adolescents. Other differences are:
- Children often have non‐Hodgkin lymphoma while adolescents will have the Hodgkin lymphoma version
- Thyroid Carcinoma and Skin Melanoma are rarely found in children but are more common in adolescents
Leukemia Mortality Rates and Leukemia Remissions
As Leukemia is one of the most common forms of childhood cancers, many professionals have focused on this disease. From 1970 to 2020, studies have shown an extreme reduction in overall childhood cancer mortality rates! Most of these are from saving the lives of children and adolescents affected by a type of Leukemia.
Additionally, there has been remarkable progress towards increasing the remission rates, the absence of any signs or symptoms of cancer, of acute lymphocytic leukemia. Over the recent decades the remission rate for children with this type of common cancer has reached up to 90-98%! With the development of how to fully utilize chemotherapeutic procedures, doctors have been able to save thousands of children’s lives. On the other hand, treatments made for adolescents are slightly different due to various reasons like:
- Differences in tumor biology
- Clinical trial enrollments
- Specific treatment protocols
- Levels of tolerance and compliance with treatment
This has lowered the remission rates slightly to 85-90% for adolescents with acute lymphocytic leukemia.
Childhood Cancer Facts Regarding Diagnosis, Morality, and 5-Year Survival Rates
*Table information was gathered from the American Cancer Society about 2023 Cancer Statistics*
Since 1991, the cancer mortality rate for childhood cancers has been decreasing . Thanks to every donor, researcher, and doctor who have tirelessly poured their efforts into developments over the years such as
- Studying probably causes
- Improving or developing new treatments
- Expanding care access
- increasing interest in funding research for treatments
There’s an estimated 3.8 million deaths from childhood cancer that have been averted! Everyone’s efforts are showing fruit and making a difference, but we can’t afford to slow down until every child is free from cancer. Join with us today by purchasing one of our handcrafted items at the Super Nova Creations store in Baxter or on our facebook group.