In support of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, Bite Me Cancer is dedicated to helping to educate parents on the facts about childhood cancer.
Everyone is generally aware that Childhood Cancer exists, but what is interesting, and concerning, is how expansive it is and how little funding is available for research and treatment development.
Take a look at the questions and answers to 5 simple facts.
How many cases of childhood cancer are diagnosed worldwide annually?
There are slightly more than 300,000 children around the globe diagnosed with cancer each year. That equates to a child learning they have cancer every 2 minutes. In the US, more children are lost to cancer than any other childhood disease.
Childhood cancer often goes misdiagnosed or undiagnosed. What percent of tumors have metastasized by the time of diagnosis?
It is easier to diagnose adult cancers during the early stages due to some of their unique symptoms. However, in 80% of the diagnosed childhood cases the tumor has metastasized. Detection is more difficult in children given the symptom similarities to other common childhood, less serious, illnesses.
What percent of the National Cancer Institute’s annual budget is allocated to childhood cancer?
Only 4%. The primary reason funding is low is because the perceived market impact is too small to attract private industry. However, some of the most significant advances in the battle on cancer in general have been made by studying childhood cancers, with some of the most important genes involved in cancer first found to be mutated in pediatric cancers.
How many drugs have been introduced to treat childhood cancer in the last 20 years?
In 20 years, only 3 new drugs have been approved for childhood cancer treatment, driven by the lack of funding.
Thanks to the limited funded advanced research and treatment options, survival rates have increased from 50% to what?
The great news is that survival rates have increased to 80% in the last 5 years. Imagine how high survival rates could go, for both children and adults, if more funding was available for childhood cancer research.
One of Bite Me Cancer’s missions is to inspire teens battling all forms of cancer now. Since 2012 we have been lifting the spirits of teens battling all types of cancer through our Teen Support Bag Program. The Teen Support Bag Program was born out of Bite Me Cancer founder Nikki Ferraro’s personal experience when she was diagnosed with a rare form of thyroid cancer at just 17 years old. There is much support for pediatric and pre-teen age children. But Nikki did not feel that support was appropriate for teens, so she formed the foundation to address this gap. For just $65 per bag, teens are inspired to win their battle. Visit our Inspiration page to learn more.