Parents may need to educate other family members, friends, school personnel and healthcare providers about long-term and late effects. Here are some steps parents can take:
- Talk to your child's doctors and discuss the potential for long-term and late effects, as well as an ongoing plan to evaluate potential effects of treatment.
- Keep a record of physical and emotional symptoms that your child experiences and discuss them with your child's treatment team.
- Make sure that your child's oncology team, primary care providers and specialists — cardiologists, allergists and endocrinologists, for example — are in communication.
- Keep all medical records, including dates and locations of treatment, specific drug and supportive therapies (such as blood transfusions) and doses and specific sites and amounts of radiation therapy, if applicable. Keep copies of blood, marrow and imaging test (MRI, CT scan, x-ray) results.
- Ask your child's doctor for a written summary of your child’s cancer treatment, including names of all drugs used, whether radiation was used, what type of surgical procedures were performed and whether your child experienced any unusual or severe acute complications of cancer therapy.
- Help your child develop and maintain a healthy lifestyle after treatment ends, including appropriate exercise, sun protection, good nutrition and not smoking. Enlist the help of health professionals as needed.
- Keep follow-up appointments with the oncology team even if your child is feeling well.
- Download or order The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's free booklets:
- Learning & Living With Cancer
- Long Term and Late Effects of Treatment for Childhood Leukemia or Lymphoma Facts