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J Pediatr Psychol. 1998 Oct;23(5):333-40.

Cognitive and academic late effects among children previously treated for acute lymphocytic leukemia receiving chemotherapy as CNS prophylaxis.

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Medical University of South Carolina, Department of Pediatrics, Children's Hospital, Charleston 29425, USA.



Examine cognitive and academic late effects among children and adolescents who had received central nervous system (CNS) prophylactic chemotherapy alone for acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL); none had received whole brain radiation therapy (RT).


Subjects included 47 children and adolescents from 5 to 22 years of age who were treated on the same protocol and had been off treatment from 2 to 7 years at the time of assessment.


As a group the survivors displayed generally average performance on measures of cognitive and academic abilities, although they differed from normative means on tests of nonverbal skills. Girls performed more poorly than the normative sample on nonverbal tasks, while no differences were found for boys. Age at diagnosis and time off treatment were not significantly associated with cognitive and academic functioning for survivors of this particular chemotherapy-only protocol.


Data were interpreted to support generally modest potential late effects in specific areas for children and adolescents surviving ALL. These findings suggest a need for monitoring nonverbal cognitive skills for childhood survivors of ALL, particularly for girls.

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