Whilst we do not fully understand the causes of childhood cancers, they are believed in most cases to be caused by non-inherited changes (mutations) to cells (Kid's Health, n.d). Because these occur randomly and unpredictably, there is no effective prevention. Certain genetic predispositions also exist. For example, Downs syndrome has been associated with leukaemia (Cancer Council SA, n.d).
Over 600 children aged 0-14 each year in Australia are diagnosed with cancer (Children's Cancer Institute Australia, n.d). On average, three Australian children die from cancer every week, cancer being the largest killer of children from disease and childhood cancer having the second highest death incidence, after breast cancer (Children's Cancer Institute Australia, n.d).
There are many initiatives to support childhood cancer victims. One such initiative is the creation of bald barbies, as I blogged about here. These dolls highlight that bald is beautiful and make children feel better about being bald or having bald relatives.
For more information about childhood cancer, check out these websites:
It is vital that awareness be raised about childhood cancer so that the high death incidence can be reduced.
Will you help spread the word about childhood cancer?
P.S. Have you check out Determined to Cure on Facebook? And have you seen Determined to Cure on Instagram?