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Up to half of childhood cancer survivors will develop hormone disorders

Up to half of childhood cancer survivors will develop hormone disorders

A Clinical Practice Guideline advising healthcare providers on how to diagnose and treat the endocrine disorders that affect a significant portion of childhood cancer survivors was issued by The Endocrine Society. According to a recent data, almost 50 percent of these survivors will develop an endocrine disorder over their lifetime. The guideline provides recommendations on how to diagnose and manage certain endocrine and growth disorders commonly found in childhood cancer survivors

The guideline, titled “Hypothalamic-Pituitary and Growth Disorders in Survivors of Childhood Cancer: An Endocrine Society Clinical Practice Guideline,” appears in  The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM), a publication of the Endocrine Society.  The Society established the Clinical Practice Guideline Program to provide endocrinologists and other clinicians with evidence-based recommendations in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of endocrine-related conditions.

Charles A Sklar and his associates formulated clinical practice guidelines for the endocrine treatment of hypothalamic-pituitary and growth disorders in survivors of childhood cancer.

“Childhood cancer survivors have a high risk of developing endocrine disorders,” said Charles A. Sklar. He added, “Our new guideline addresses the growing risk of endocrine disorders among childhood cancer survivors and suggests best practices for managing pituitary and growth disorders commonly found in this population. The guideline stresses the importance of life-long screening of these survivors for earlier detection and optimal patient care.”

Recommendations from the guideline include:

  • Long-term screening of childhood cancer survivors who underwent radiation therapy to the brain.
  • This population should be screened for growth disorders, pituitary hormone deficiencies, and early puberty.
  • If a condition is diagnosed, in most instances, clinicians should treat these survivors with the same approaches as other patients who develop endocrine conditions.

Read AlsoSurvivors of childhood cancer at greater risk of CVD & early mortality

Childhood cancer is relatively rare, and due to improvements in treatment and patient care, the current five-year survival rates exceed 80 percent. These survivors face a greater risk of developing serious medical complications, even decades after cancer treatment ends. Endocrine disorders are especially prevalent among this population, often as a result of their previous treatments, particularly exposure to radiation therapy.

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Source: With inputs from JECM

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