As of January 1, 2010, there were approximately 380,000 survivors of childhood and adolescent cancer (diagnosed at ages 0 to 19 years) alive in the United States (1). The number of survivors will continue to increase, given that the incidence of childhood cancer has been rising slightly in recent decades and that survival rates overall are improving. Children are not little adults. Therefore, childhood cancer differs from cancer in adults in terms of its frequency, type, biological characteristics and its possible causes. While exposure to dietary, lifestyle and environmental factors play a major role in the development of cancers in adults, only a few risk factors, such as ionising radiation and a mother's exposure to X-rays during pregnancy have been identified as risk factors in children. These account for only a small portion of cases.
Childhood cancer researchers have evidence, that the first few cells of various malignancies, such as Wilms tumours, neuroblastomas, germ cells and some brain tumours may already be present at birth. This suggests that changes in certain cells of the body may have already happened in the embryo. However, much more research is needed to completely and accurately describe what causes a specific cancer in a child.
As the author of this blog, I have based my writings upon my own experiences, beliefs and extensive research regarding the topics covered in my blog. However, I am not a medical doctor, nurse or professional nutritionist or otherwise formally qualified in this subject matter. The information contained in this blog is not intended to be construed in any manner as medical advice. Quotes are based upon the opinions of this author and others who contributed to this blog. All diet decisions should be made with approval of your health care provider. This blog is intended to motivate and encourage readers to make healthy decisions after consulting with a qualified health care professional. Therefore, please read my blog and use the information that you derive from it appropriately and at your own risk.