Mental health status of adolescent cancer survivors

Ann C. Mertens, Jordan Gilleland Marchak
2015 Clinical Oncology in Adolescents and Young Adults  
Due to the successful treatment of children with cancer, overall 5-year survival rates now exceed 80%. Because of this success in treating childhood cancer, concerns are now focusing on the potential risk of both physical and psychosocial late effects in these cancer survivors. There is limited data available for clinicians and researchers on the mental health of adolescent survivors of childhood cancers. The goal of this review is to provide a concise evaluation of the content and attributes
more » ... nt and attributes of literature available on this often overlooked, yet vulnerable, population. Overall, studies on psychological outcomes in adolescent survivors of pediatric cancer suggest that the majority are mentally healthy and do not report significant levels of psychological distress. Several factors were recognized as playing an important role in adverse psychosocial outcomes in these adolescent cancer survivors: to include the diagnosis of a tumor in the central nervous system, central nervous system-directed cancer treatment, and physical late effects. To identify the subset of survivors who may benefit from systematic psychological services, systematic psychological screening of all adolescent cancer survivors during followup oncology visits is recommended. Further research into this critical area is needed to help identify other potential risk factors and guide the development of evidence-based support for these vulnerable adolescents.
doi:10.2147/coaya.s49174 fatcat:enbmpqmxrbfxfgph57gmzcx7ae