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This is a place to disscus childhood cancers that are affecting you or has affected you in anyway. This group is to help spread the word for the children with cancer. Give thoughts and comments on how you have helped a family, donated, and supporting.
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Join our cause to raise Childhood Cancer Awareness! As a mother of a child who is currently fighting Leukemia, I feel that it is important to spread the word and talk to other families and parents who know what it is like to go through this. He is 3 and is in remission, Dylan was diagnosed at the age of 23 months. He has done wonderful, with the exception of hospializations, but without support we wouldn't have made it this far. I would like everyone to know that we are wanting to make Childhood Cancer Awareness big like Breast Cancer Awareness. So join us in this great cause! Everyone needs to be educated about childhood cancers! God Bless
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    Alert: Brighter Future for Our Children  
    Focus:Children
    Action Request:Petition
    Location:United States


    I created this petition because my son lost an eye to cancer and I am asking you to Please sign my petition so our children can have a brighter future.

    Push Pediatricians to Perform Eye Exams Starting at Birth - The Petition Site












    Posted: May 13, 2013 11:34pm | (0) | (0) |  
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    { else }   Blog: What is Leukemia  

    When it comes to understanding leukemia, the very first fact to grasp about the condition is that leukemia is a form of cancer. As with all types of cancer, leukemia begins at the cellular level. Our body is always in the process of generating new cells to replace the older cells as they lose energy and eventually die. When the body begins to produce more cells than the body needs to replace the older cells that are dying, the chance for the development of some type of cancer appears. In the case of leukemia, we are talking about unstable production of blood cells.

    There are several situations that have the potential for the development of leukemia. For instance, working with certain chemicals without taking adequate safeguards can greatly increase the chances for leukemia to occur. Such chemical compounds as Benzene, when handled inappropriately and for extended periods of time, may impair the body's natural production of cells and lead to leukemia. In like manner, formaldehyde is another chemical that can encourage leukemia, as it is used regularly in a number of industries and professions. As with benzene, it is imperative that any work with formaldehyde is done under the strictest of conditions, as continued exposure can lead to the production of leukemia. Please click here for more information on Leukemia Causes.

    How does one tell if leukemia may be developing in the body? One of the most common symptoms of leukemia is a constant fever accompanied with night sweats. Along with the sweating, the individual suffering with leukemia may increasingly feel tired, even after getting a full night's sleep. The individual with leukemia may contract colds or catch infections with much greater frequency than before. Essentially, if there is a sense of decreased well being for a leukemia sufferer and the individual just seems to never really feel good, there is at least a chance that leukemia is involved. Please click here for more information on Leukemia Symptoms.

    Fortunately, there are leukemia specialists that can help the individual seek out the best series of treatments for his or her particular stage of leukemia. The family physician can often recommend leukemia specialists such as oncologists, hematologists, and others who can help the individual deal with leukemia. Mental health professionals may also be needed in order to help the leukemia patient deal with the emotional toll associated with leukemia.

    The leukemia specialist will determine the specific type of leukemia that has developed. From there, it is easier to evaluate overall health conditions and come up with a leukemia treatment program that will be right for the leukemia patient. As an example, radiation therapy may be determined to be the best leukemia treatment. For the next person, biological therapy may be seen as the right leukemia treatment. Please click here for more information on Leukemia Treatments.


    Posted: May 12, 2007 2:57pm | (0) | (0) |  
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    { else }   Blog: JMML Treatment  
    There is no internationally accepted treatment protocol for JMML. Currently, 2 clinical treatment protocols most widely used to study JMML and improve treatment for these children are geographically-based:
    • North America: The Children’s Oncology Group (COG) JMML Study
    • Europe: The European Working Group for Myelodysplastic Syndromes (EWOG-MDS) JMML Study
    • Other clinical trials open to patients with JMML may be searched for at the NIH Clinical Trials website.

    The following procedures are used in one or both of the current clinical trials listed above:

    • Splenectomy

      The theory behind splenectomy is that in JMML, the spleen acts as a trap for leukemic cells, which leads to their enlarged size. The fear is that since radiation and chemotherapy attack active leukemia cells rather than dormant ones, if the spleen is not removed it may harbor JMML cells that can later lead to relapse. The impact of splenectomy for post-transplant relapse, though, is unknown.

      The COG JMML Study includes splenectomy as a standard treatment for all clinically stable patients.

      The EWOG-MDS JMML Study allows each child’s physician to determine whether or not a spleenectomy should be done, and large spleens are commonly removed prior to bone marrow transplant.

      When a splenectomy is scheduled, JMML patients are advised to receive vaccines against Streptococcus pneumoneae and Haemophilus influenza at least 2 weeks prior to the procedure.

      Following splenectomy, penicillin may be administered daily in order to protect the patient against bacterial infections that the spleen would otherwise have protected against; this daily preventative regimen will usually continue until the patient is an adult.

    • Chemotherapy/Pharmacologic Treatment

      The role of chemotherapy against JMML before bone marrow transplant has not been studied and is still unknown. Chemotherapy by itself has proven unable to bring about long-term survival in JMML.

      Low-dose conventional chemotherapy:-

      • Studies have shown no influence from low-dose conventional chemotherapy on JMML patients’ length of survival.
      • Some combinations of 6-mercaptopurine with other chemotherapy drugs have produced results such as decrease in organ size and increase or normalization of platelet and leukocyte count.

      Intensive chemotherapy:-

      • Complete remission from JMML has not been possible through use of intensive chemotherapy, but it is still used at times because it has improved the condition of a small but significant number of JMML patients who do not display an aggressive disease.
      • The COG JMML Study administers 2 cycles of fludarabine and cytarabine for 5 consecutive days along with 13-cis retinoic acid during and afterwards.
      • The EWOG-MDS JMML Study, however, does not recommend intensive chemotherapy before bone marrow transplant.

      13-cis Retinoic acid (a.k.a. Accutane):-

      • In the lab, 13-cis-retinoic acid has been proven to inhibit the growth of JMML cells.
      • The COG JMML Study therefore includes 13-cis-retinoic acid in its treatment protocol, though its therapeutic value for JMML remains controversial.

    • Radiation/Radiotherapy

      Radiation to the spleen does not generally result in a decrease in spleen size or reduction of platelet transfusion requirement.

    • Stem cell transplantation (a.k.a. bone marrow transplant)

      The only treatment that has resulted in cures for JMML is a bone marrow transplant, with about a 50% survival rate.

      The risk of relapsing after transplant is high, and has been recorded as high as 50%.

      Generally, JMML clinical researchers recommend that a patient have a bone marrow transplant scheduled as soon as possible after diagnosis.

      A younger age at bone marrow transplant appears to predict a better outcome.

      Donor:-

      • Transplants from a matched family donor (MFD), matched unrelated donor (MUD), and matched unrelated umbilical cord blood donors have all shown similar relapse rates, though transplant-related deaths are higher with MUDs and mostly due to infectious causes. Extra medicinal protection, therefore, is usually given to recipients of MUD transplants to protect the child from Graft Versus Host Disease (GVHD).
      • JMML patients are justified for MUD transplants if no MFD is available due to the low rate of survival without a bone marrow transplant.

      Conditioning regimen:-

      • The COG JMML Study involves 8 rounds of total-body irradiation (TBI) and doses of cyclophosphamide to prepare the JMML child’s body for bone marrow transplant. Use of TBI is controversial, though, because of the possibility of late side-effects such as slower growth, sterility, learning disabilities, and secondary cancers, and the fact that radiation can have devastating effects on very young children. It is used in this study, however, due to the concern that chemotherapy alone might not be enough to kill dormant JMML cells.
      • The EWOG-MDS JMML Study includes busulfan in place of TBI due to its own research findings that appeared to show that busulfan was more effective against leukemia in JMML than TBI. The EWOG-MDS study also involves cyclophosphamide and melphalan in its conditioning regimen.

      Graft versus leukemia:-

      • Graft versus leukemia has been shown many times to play an important role in curing JMML, and it is usually evidenced in a child after bone marrow transplant through some amount of acute or chronic Graft Versus Host Disease (GVHD). Evidence of either acute or chronic GVHD is linked to a lower relapse rate in JMML.
      • Careful management of immunosuppressant drugs for control of GVHD is essential in JMML; importantly, children who receive less of this prophylaxis have a lower relapse rate.
      • After bone marrow transplant, reducing ongoing immunosuppressive therapy has worked successfully to reverse the course of a bone marrow with a dropping donor percentage and to prevent a relapse.  Donor lymphocyte infusion (DLI), on the other hand, does not frequently work to bring children with JMML back into remission.

      For more information on Bone Marrow Transplants: http://www.umm.edu/blood/bonemarr.htm

    • Relapse

      After bone marrow transplant, the relapse rate for children with JMML may be as high as 50%.

      Relapse often occurs within a few months after transplant and the risk of relapse drops considerably at the one-year point after transplant.

      A significant number of JMML patients do achieve complete remission and long-term cure after a second bone marrow transplant, so this additional therapy should always be considered for children who relapse.



    If you need help with some of the medical terms included in these pages, please use the NIH Medical Glossary.


    The information on this page was last reviewed in August 2005 by Dr. Mignon Loh, Assistant Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, University of California at San Francisco.


    Posted: May 12, 2007 2:28pm | (0) | (0) |  
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    { else }   Blog: Juvenile Myelomonocytic Leukemia (JMML)  
    DEFINITION
    • Juvenile Myelomonocytic Leukemia (JMML) is a serious chronic leukemia (cancer of the blood) that affects children mostly aged 4 and under.
    • The average age of patients at diagnosis is 2 years old.
    • The World Health Organization has included JMML in the category of Myelodysplastic and Myeloproliferative disorders.
    • The name JMML now encompasses all diagnoses formerly referred to as Juvenile Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (JCML), Chronic Myelomonocytic Leukemia of Infancy, and Infantile Monosomy 7 Syndrome.

    FREQUENCY

    • JMML accounts for 1-2% of childhood leukemias each year; in the United States, an estimated 25-50 new cases are diagnosed each year, which also equates to about 3 cases per million children.
    • There is no known environmental cause for JMML.
    • Since about 10% of patients are diagnosed before 3 months of age, it is thought that JMML is a congenital condition in these infants.

    GENETICS

    • About 80% of JMML patients have some sort of genetic abnormality in their leukemia cells that can be identified with laboratory testing. This includes:
      • 15-20% of patients with neurofibromatosis 1 (NF1)
      • 25% of patients with mutations in one of the RAS family of oncogenes (only in their leukemia cells)
      • another 35% of patients with a mutation in a gene called PTPN11 (again, only in their leukemia cells).


    If you need help with some of the medical terms included in these pages, please use the NIH Medical Glossary.


    The information on this page was last reviewed in August 2005 by Dr. Mignon Loh, Assistant Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, University of California at San Francisco.


    Posted: May 12, 2007 2:25pm | (0) | (0) |  
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