Teenage Cancer Trust | January 2019 | New report shows more young people surviving cancer
A new report from Teenager Cancer Trust uses data collected by NCRAS (National Cancer Registration and Analysis Service) which has been analysed to identify trends and share finding with partners to improve cancer services and awareness. Now Teenage Cancer Trust report 13-24 years old who were diagnosed in England up to the end of 2015. The publication marks the first time a detailed analysis has been conducted of cancer rates of the 13 to 24-year age group and shows an encouraging increase in survival rates.
Some of the report’s key findings:
Mortality rates of all cancers combined in 13 to 24 year olds have decreased from 42.9 per million in 2001 to 32.3 per million in 2015.
The largest reduction in mortality by diagnostic group in England between 2001 and 2015 has been in Leukaemias. There were also reductions seen in mortality from Central Nervous System tumours, bone cancer and in lymphoma.
Five-year survival rates for cancer in 13 to 24 year olds have risen from 83% females / 80% males in (2001-05) to 87% in females / 84 % males (2007-11).
There are statistically significant variations in incidence and survival rates of cancer in 13 to 24 year olds based on geography and deprivation.
The incidence of cancer in 13 to 24 years olds in England has increased from a crude rate of 233.1 per million in 2001, to 299.7 per million in 2015 (Source: Teenage Cancer Trust).
Bhakta, N.|(2019| Childhood cancer burden: a review of global estimates| The Lancet Oncology|20|1| e42|e53.
A new article in the Lancet Oncology analyses 4 studies of the global cancer burden that included data for children and adolescents, with the aim that these data could help stakeholders to develop plans for national and institutional cancer programmes.
The Review provides guidance on improving future estimates of the childhood global cancer burden, as the data in low-income and middle-income countries is scarce. As such the researchers propose several recommendations to strengthen data collection and standardise analyses.
5-year net survival of children and adolescents diagnosed with cancer is approximately 80% in many high-income countries. This estimate is encouraging as it shows the substantial progress that has been made in the diagnosis and treatment of childhood cancer. Unfortunately, scarce data are available for low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs), where nearly 90% of children with cancer reside, suggesting that global survival estimates are substantially worse in these regions. As LMICs are undergoing a rapid epidemiological transition, with a shifting burden from infectious diseases to non-communicable diseases, cancer care for all ages has become a global focus. To improve outcomes for children and adolescents diagnosed with cancer worldwide, an accurate appraisal of the global burden of childhood cancer is a necessary first step. In this Review, we analyse four studies of the global cancer burden that included data for children and adolescents. Each study used various overlapping and non-overlapping statistical approaches and outcome metrics. Moreover, to provide guidance on improving future estimates of the childhood global cancer burden, we propose several recommendations to strengthen data collection and standardise analyses. Ultimately, these data could help stakeholders to develop plans for national and institutional cancer programmes, with the overall aim of helping to reduce the global burden of cancer in children and adolescents.
Rotherham NHS staff may request this article from the Library
All children with cancer in England will be offered whole genome sequencing from this year in a move that will enable more comprehensive and precise diagnosis and access to more personalised treatments.
According to NHS England’s long term plan, this will reduce the use of harmful drugs and interventions, support increased access to clinical trials, and reduce the number of young patients who have health problems caused by chemotherapy and radiotherapy
Darren Hargrave, honorary consultant paediatric oncologist at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children and a member of the paediatric cancer task group which advised NHS England says there are three major benefits:
refinement of diagnosis
and screening for family members
It was also announced that children who need proton beam therapy will be able to access it in England rather than having to travel abroad. New proton beam facilities have been commissioned in London and Manchester, and will come online in the next couple of years (Source: BMJ)
Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership | December 2018 | Medical & Surgical Review Programme: Cancer in Children, Teens and Young Adults Report
HQIP (Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership) has produced a review of the quality of care provided to patients aged 24 years and under who were receiving systemic anti-cancer therapy and subsequently died or were admitted to critical care.
This report deliberately focuses on a sample of patients who were a high-risk group who died or who had an unexpected admission to intensive care. The rationale being that this is where care-planning, service provision and communication should excel. Any remediable factors in care for this group would benefit all children, teenagers and young adults receiving systemic anti cancer therapy (SACT).
Medical & Surgical Review Programme: Cancer in Children, Teens and Young Adults Report | Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership
Cancer outcomes in children and young people have improved dramatically over the last few decades with over 80% of those diagnosed now being cured of their disease. Of those who die, approximately half will do so from treatment related complications many of which are avoidable.
This report deliberately focuses on a sample of patients who were a high-risk group who died or who had an unexpected admission to intensive care. The rationale being that this is where care-planning, service provision and communication should excel. Any remediable factors in care for this group would benefit all children, teenagers and young adults receiving SACT.
One of the recommendations from this report is that the audit and quality improvement methods, with action plans, are essential for on-going improvement but require access to data. Electronic prescribing was not universal at the time of data collection and many hospitals had no ready access to information on which patients had received SACT and their outcomes.
Along with adequately trained staff, good team working and clear local leadership, such implementations are key drivers for improving care for this vulnerable population.
The first children to receive a game-changing personalised therapy for cancer will start treatment at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London this week | via NHS England
CAR-T is a highly complex new type of immunotherapy which involves collecting and using the patients’ own immune cells to target their cancer in a process which is completed over a number of weeks.
The start of this treatment marks the beginning of a new era of personalised medicine, and forms part of the upgrade in cancer services which will be set out shortly NHS’s long term plan.
In September, NHS England struck the first full access deal in Europe on tisagenlecleucel, which can potentially cure some children with B cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) where other treatments have failed, enabling NICE to recommend the treatment for entry into the reformed NHS Cancer Drugs Fund last week.
The landmark deal with Novartis came less than 10 days after the treatment was granted its European marketing licence and represents one of the fastest funding approvals in the 70 year history of the NHS.
OnMedica | November 2018 | Hope for non-toxic treatment for child cancer
One of the most common childhood cancers- neuroblastoma – has been found by researchers investigating treatments for the condition in animals. Neuroblastoma is the leading single cause of cancer in under 5s. Currently, despite using intensive treatment regimens, children with the most aggressive forms of neuroblastoma have a less than 50% survival rate. Although researchers in Australia have studied the effects of using this treatment on mice, a combination of two drugs was found to be more effective than other treatments (via OnMedica).
The research team have recently presented their findings at the 30th EORTC-NI-AACR Symposium, an event that unites academics, scientists and pharmaceutical industry representatives from across the world to discuss the latest advances and the impact of new discoveries in molecular biology. (Full story from OnMedica)
OnMedica Hope for non-toxic treatment for child cancer