Leukaemia is no longer the No. 1 cause of cancer deaths in children – brain cancer has taken its place, according to a new report.
Paediatric cancer death rates have been dropping overall since the mid-1970s, according to a report released Sept. 16th from the National Center for Health Statistics. The report details changes in cancer death rates among children and teens ages 1 to 19, from 1999 to 2014.
Lead author Sally Curtin, demographer and statistician at the NCHS, which is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), said:
“The shift from leukemia to brain cancer as the leading site of cancer death is a noteworthy development in the history of childhood cancer as it was always leukemia until quite recently,”
There were still 1,785 cancer deaths in children and adolescents in 2014, according to Curtin, and Brain cancer and leukaemia accounted for more than 50% of those.
In 1999, 6/20 cancer deaths among children were due to leukaemia, and about 5/20 were due to brain cancer, according to the numbers in the report. By 2014, those numbers had reversed.