The incidence of differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC) among adolescents has dramatically increased in recent years. Despite an excellent overall prognosis for children with DTC, treatment-related complications and treatment late effects can and continue to negatively affect the emotional status and quality of life of these patients.
Researchers at the Center for Childhood Cancer Research are reviewing and modifying existing treatment regimens and practices to help to improve medical and health-related quality of life outcomes for pediatric patients with differentiated thyroid cancer. Redefining survivorship to account for treatment late effects, the demands of lifelong surveillance and impacts of health related quality of life on DTC patients and their families have been implemented.
Current efforts are underway to develop quality of life measures and intervention strategies to help to maintain high cure rates while minimizing physical and psychosocial late effects for pediatric patients with DTC.