Clin Pediatr Hematol Oncol.  2008 Apr;15(1):10-16.

Late Effect of Pediatric Cancer Therapy on Thyroid Function

  • 1Pediatric Hematology Oncology Service, Department of Pediatrics, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


Purpose: According to advances in childhood cancer therapy, survival outcomes are markedly improved during the past few decades. On the other hand, late effects of childhood cancer survivors are nowadays having been issued owing to its importance of early detection and proper management. It is now known from references abroad that thyroid disorders have frequently occurred in long-term survivors since endocrine organs are sensitive to both cytotoxic drugs and radiation. However, research in Korea has not been published yet. The aim of this study was to investigate the late effect of cancer therapy on thyroid disorders in childhood cancer survivors.
Medical records of 129 childhood cancer survivors who visited long term follow up clinic between 2005 and 2008 were retrospectively reviewed. Clinical characteristics including individual cancer therapy were reviewed. We analyzed the relationship between thyroid function status with variable clinical factors and types of cancer therapy.
The incidence of thyroid dysfunction was 30.2% (39/129) in long-term survivors with cancer therapy. Thyroid dysfunction were more frequently in patients treated with radiotherapy (P=0.021) and stem cell transplantation (P=0.001). We also found a significant association between underlying disease and thyroid dysfunction (P<0.001).
These findings emphasize the need for long-term follow-up of thyroid function in childhood cancer survivors after radiotherapy or/and stem cell transplantation in order to offer proper treatment.


Children; Cancer; Long-term survivors; Thyroid function tests; Complications
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