Psychosocial status of childhood cancer survivors who develop one or more secondary malignancies

Roman Korenjak, Mojca Čižek Sajko, Berta Jereb


Objective. Childhood cancer survivors can develop physical, emotionaland psychosocial adversities, a secondary malignancy (SM) beingone of the most serious among them. Th e aim of our research was tostudy whether the development of SM was related to the psychosocialfunctioning of survivors, especially whether any psychic trauma fromthe fi rst experience would be aggravated by SM. Patients and methods.Seventy – fi ve childhood cancer survivors with SM were matched with75 survivors who did not develop SM, by sex, age, living enviroment,diagnosis, year of diagnosis and treatment of the fi rst malignancy. Th eywere compared regarding education, employment, marital status and,in the 35 women, childbirth data. Seventeen childhood survivors withan SM had had psychological evaluations at diagnosis of both theirfi rst and secondary cancers; the results of the two were compared. Results.Th ere were no diff erences in the schooling, education, social,marital status or birth specifi cs between survivors with SM and theircontrols, nor were there marked diff erences in measures of social orpsychological status. Conclusions. Th e socioeconomic status of these75 subjects was not found to be related to the development of SM. Psychologicalevaluations showed no marked diff erences between thoseconducted aft er the fi rst and the secondary malignancies.


Childhood; Secondary malignancy; Psychological evaluation; Socioeconomic status

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