Second Malignant Neoplasm
All survivors of childhood cancer are recommended to have a comprehensive yearly health check up.
Survivors should be aware that any new symptoms of concern should be immediately reported to their family doctor or health care provider such as:
- A new swelling or lump (either painful or non-painful) anywhere
- New pain in any area - such as bone.
- Symptoms of a blood disorder:
- Easy bruising
- New tendency to bleed easily (such as frequent nose bleeds)
- Pale skin
- Lack of energy
- Night sweats and fevers
- Changes in any moles, such as:
- Increase in size
- Increase or decrease in pigmentation
- New "raised" area or ulcer
- Bowel problems:
- Change in bowel habit (such as constipation)
- Rectal bleeding
- Blood in the urine
- CNS problems:
- New headaches (especially associated with nausea)
- New visual changes
- Respiratory symptoms:
- Shortness of breath
To reduce the risk of second cancers, survivors should avoid exposure to toxic agents associated with cancer:
1. Tobacco (smoked, chewed etc) leads to cancer. Exposure to second hand smoke should also be avoided.
2. Marijuana: In June 2002, a panel of experts brought together by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (an agency of the World Health Organization) determined that second-hand smoke causes cancer. Marijuana and cigarette smoke contain as many as 50 of the same cancer causing substances. For these reasons, experts believe that exposure to second-hand marijuana smoke is at least as harmful as second-hand tobacco smoke.
A healthy diet - low in fat, high in fibre and plenty of green vegetables.