PMID: 12580371Feb 13, 2003Paper

Genetic predisposition and screening in pediatric cancer

Pediatric Clinics of North America
Samart Pakakasama, Gail E Tomlinson


Pediatricians are often the health care providers who first detect the signs and symptoms of childhood cancer. Although pediatric malignancies are rare diseases, early diagnosis is an important factor leading to high cure rates of many types of cancers including retinoblastomara, Wilms' tumor, hepatoblastoma, rhabdomyosarcoma. thyroid carcinoma, and other solid tumors. A number of familial cancer syndromes present with childhood cancers that can be recognized or diagnosed by pediatricians. The genetic origins of several syndromes have been elucidated. Genetic testing is not yet available for all of these inherited cancers. A frequently updated list of genetic tests is available at The ordering and interpreting of genetic tests, however, is often best done by trained genetic counselors. The pediatrician will play a vital on-going role in following the at-risk child. In many of syndromes discussed, the cost effectiveness of the tests as well as that of any potential intervention needs further study. The role of the subtle genetic polymorphisms in pediatric tumorigenesis. many more of which will undoubtedly be described in the coming years, has not yet been translated into defined needs for interventions. Perhap...Continue Reading


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