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Indian J Med Paediatr Oncol. 2011 Jan;32(1):30-3. doi: 10.4103/0971-5851.81887.

Childhood cancer in developing society: A roadmap of health care.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Govt. TD Medical College, Alappuzha, Kerala, India.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

We assessed referral patterns of children with hematological malignancies (HM) in North India.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

The parents/guardians were interviewed at presentation, in the period between October 2001 and November 2002. Patient delay (symptom-contact), health system delay (contact-diagnosis), total delay (symptom-diagnosis), and number of contacts were compared between high- and standard-risk disease group.

RESULTS:

Of the 79 children (55 boys; 69.6%) with HM, 47 (59.5%) had Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). Forty-four children had high-risk disease. The patient, system and total delay were a median of 2 days (with Interquartile range IQR of 1-6), 37 days (IQR 13-55), and 38 days (IQR 15-60) respectively. Majority of patients (64/79; 81%) went to private sector (non governmental health care providers) for health care. Number of contacts, which was the most significant, correlate with system delay.

CONCLUSIONS:

Sensitizing the private sector practitioners about cancer in symptomatic children (pallor, bleeding, fever) may be effective.

KEYWORDS:

Childhood cancer; epidemiology; patient delay; referral delay

PMID:
21731213
[PubMed]
PMCID:
PMC3124987
Free PMC Article
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