Coping with Infection in Childhood Cancer

Infection in Childhood CancerSymptom Management, Palliative Care, or Supportive Care to relieve side-effects is an important part of cancer care and treatment and should always form part of the overall treatment plan.

An infection occurs when the immune system is not able to destroy harmful bacteria, viruses, or fungi or yeast quickly. Individuals with cancer are far more likely to develop infections easily because both the cancer itself as well as the cancer treatments weakens their immune system.

The immune system fights bacteria, viruses, and fungi that try to invade the body and includes the skin, the spleen, lymph nodes, the bone marrow and white blood cells called leukocytes and neutrophils, which help fight infections and destroy harmful substances.

A low level of neutrophils, called neutropenia, often increases the risk of developing dangerous infections. Leukopenia is when the body does not have enough white blood cells to fight infections.

Individuals with cancer, neutropenia, or a low white blood cell count are more likely to develop a serious infection.

Infections can start almost anywhere; common areas for an infection to start include the mouth, skin, lungs, urinary tract, rectum, and the genitals.

There are various factors related to cancer and cancer treatment that can affect your child’s white blood cells and lower their immune system, which makes it easy for an infection to take hold.

It is for this reason that one needs to be very careful around Children with Cancer, and why their visitors should be kept to the minimum and screened, because the slightest sign of a cold or infection of any type in a visitor could transfer to your child and make them very ill.


Read more about the Effects, Signs and Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis and Treatment and more regarding Infections on our static page, Infections in Childhood Cancer



About LFCT

This is a blog about CHILDHOOD CANCER and CHILDHOOD CANCER AWARENESS Little Fighters Cancer Trust is a non-profit organisation that offers support and aid to Children with Cancer and their families. When a child is diagnosed with cancer it affects the whole family. One of the parents, usually the mother, must give up their job to care for the child and this creates financial problems for the family. In South Africa especially the majority of these families are not well-to-do; many of them are rural. A diagnosis of cancer can wipe out any family’s finances, let alone a poor family. The costs of special medications, special diets, hospital stays, transport to and from the hospital or clinic and accommodation and food costs for the mother who spends most of the time at her child’s bedside are astronomical. These are the people and problems that fall through the cracks, and these are the people that Little Fighters Cancer Trust has pledged to help in any way possible. LFCT takes a holistic approach to assisting the Children with Cancer and their Families, with the main aim to be the preservation of individual dignity and pride. Little Fighters Cancer Trust also focuses on promotion and advocacy of National Childhood Cancer Awareness in an effort to increase awareness of Early Warning Signs of Childhood Cancer. This would result in earlier diagnosis, giving the Child with Cancer more of a chance at Treatment and Survival. See "About" for more Background info

Posted on 22 June, 2016, in Blog and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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