If you knew more facts about pediatric cancer, it might change the way you view cancer as a whole. When most people think about cancer they probably think of an adult with lung cancer or breast cancer, but pediatric cancer is more common and more dangerous than you might think. But thankfully, with innovative research, every day brings us closer to a cure. Here are some inspiring facts about pediatric cancer that you might have known before.
1. It is the Leading Cause of Death among Children
This may be one of the shocking facts about pediatric cancer, but it is true. Cancer kills more children than any other disease, sickness, or accident. In fact, it is more deadly than AIDS, diabetes, asthma, and cystic fibrosis combined.
2. 75% of Children with Cancer Can Be Cured
This fact about pediatric cancer is a bit more cheerful because that means a majority of children with cancer will be cured. Every day more and more research is dedicated to finding a cure to 100% of all cancer. Yet still there are some forms of childhood cancer that are elusive to a cure.
3. Leukemia is the Most Common Form
Because it is the largest form of childhood cancer, it is also the most common form of cancer. The most common form of leukemia is Acute Lymphoblastic leukemia, also known as ALL. Some good news is that about 80% of the time, childhood leukemia can be cured.
4. 46 Children Are Diagnosed Every Day
On average, every weekday 46 children will hear the words “you have cancer.” This is one of many incredibly eye-opening facts about pediatric cancer because that means that, on average, 230 children are diagnosed with cancer every week. This number is far too large but thankfully research is working on finding a way to make it smaller.
5. The Cause of Most Childhood Cancers Are Unknown and Cannot Be Prevented
Unlike cancer in adults, which usually form because of lifestyle choices such as not wearing sunscreen or smoking, pediatric cancer strikes without cause. There is no known way to prevent cancer in children and most doctors have no knowledge on the cause of many forms of pediatric cancer.
6. 1 in 330 Americans Will Develop Cancer by 20 Years Old
Pediatric cancer can develop in any child ranging in any group. Cancer does not take age into account with these children. It can develop regardless of ethnicity, gender, or socio-economic status. If you think about these numbers, it means that 1 in every 4 elementary schools has a child with cancer.
7. You Can Help
After all of these shocking facts about pediatric cancer, you might be wondering how you can help. But there are tons of ways to make a difference in the life of a child. And it doesn’t necessarily limit itself to making donations to children’s hospitals, research facilities, and other funds. I am an active volunteer for Penn State THON, which raises money for pediatric cancer. One of the things we believe is most important is inspiring these children to keep up their fight and providing them with outstanding emotional support.
Whether you know a child with cancer or not, these facts are pretty eye-opening to how common pediatric cancer can be and how important it is to find a cure. Do you know any children with cancer? What other facts about pediatric cancer do you know? What do you think is the most shocking fact about pediatric cancer?