Retaining personal medical records of children who have had chemotherapy and radiotherapyBMJ 1994; 308 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.308.6945.1654 (Published 25 June 1994) Cite this as: BMJ 1994;308:1654
- M M Hawkins,
- A W Craft
Most children who develop cancer can now expect their primary disease to be cured, and this is largely attributable to intensive chemotherapy and radiotherapy.1 Long term follow up, however, shows that effects related to treatment may become evident many years later.*RF 1-4*
When children have been exposed to radiotherapy or chemotherapy important clinical reasons exist for maintaining a detailed record of such treatments. The patients may present many years (possibly decades) after treatment and ask about their prospects of being fertile, the chance of an adverse outcome of pregnancy, or the chance of their children developing serious genetic disease. Cardiomyopathy or lung dysfunction related to treatment may be diagnosed. they may also present with a late recurrence of their cancer or with a second primary neoplasm. In all of these circumstances the details of previous exposure to radiotherapy and individual cytotoxic drugs are crucially important to diagnosis and rational and safe planning of further treatment.
Now that two thirds …