Depending on the treatment your child received, he or she may need additional, ongoing tests to monitor for late effects. Baseline labs and other testing are often done at entry into survivorship care and then as recommended based on results, your child’s prior treatment, and his or her current health. Talk to the members of your child’s healthcare team to determine the best screening schedule for your child or if you have any questions or concerns.
Survivorship Care Plan
Generally, “survivorship” refers to the health and well-being of a person after cancer treatment. Your child’s oncologist will help create a survivorship care plan for your child to guide follow-up care. Share the survivorship care plan with any healthcare providers your child sees. The survivorship care plan should include the
- List of all your child’s healthcare providers: pediatrician, hematologist-oncologist, radiation oncologist, etc.
- Diagnosis summary with specifics such as stage, sites of involvement, and molecular or genetic markers
- Treatment summary with specifics such as names of chemotherapy or other drugs received, radiation dosage and site, response to treatment and side effects
- Follow-up appointment schedule with coordinating provider and frequency
- Schedule for ongoing monitoring with recommended tests and frequency
- List of possible long-term and late effects
- Health and wellness lifestyle recommendations, such as nutrition, exercise, other cancer and disease screenings, and referrals to specialists (as needed) to assist with these recommendations
The Children’s Oncology Group provides a downloadable Summary of Cancer Treatment template to fill out with the healthcare team. Visit www.survivorshipguidelines.org to download a template.
The Passport for Care Survivor Website offers free access to resources, education, and tools for survivorship for childhood cancer survivors.
Recommendations for Monitoring
The Children’s Oncology Group provides recommendations for monitoring late effects in the resource Long-Term Follow-Up Guidelines for Survivors of Childhood, Adolescent and Young Adult Cancers. The information is reviewed and updated regularly by experts in survivorship care. The guidelines are written for healthcare professionals; therefore, it is best to review the guidelines with the help of your child’s healthcare team. The “Health Links” documents provided with the guidelines are written for patients and their families. As you read through these resources, write down any questions you want to address with members of your child’s healthcare team. Visit www.survivorshipguidelines.org to download the guidelines and Health Links.