Swift childhood cancer deaths more common than thought: study

Childhood cancer often strikes its youngest victims the hardest, and the death rate for infants may be up to four times higher than previously thought, US researchers said Monday.

The study in the Journal of Clinical Oncology examined deaths within a month of diagnosis, those young lives which usually end before the patients can be enrolled in a clinical trial that might save them.

“During my pediatric residency a teenager came in with leukemia, but had so much cancer when he presented that he had multi-organ failure and died within about 24 hours of coming to our attention, before we could even start treatment,” said lead author Adam Green, investigator at the University of Colorado Cancer Center and pediatric oncologist at Children’s Hospital Colorado.

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