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Leukemia

Approximately 43,000 men and women were diagnosed with leukemia in the United States in 2009.  The disease is unique in that it is common in both pediatric (<15) cancer patients and in older adult (>60) cancer patients.  Of those diagnosed with leukemia, approximately 2600, or six percent, were diagnosed as adolescents or young adults (AYAs).  Although there have been vast improvements in survival rates especially for pediatric leukemia, AYAs have not seen these same advancements. AYAs are often caught in the gap between pediatrics and adult cancers and different outcomes were seen in comparing treatments based on pediatric protocols versus adult protocols. Overall, adolescents treated on more aggressive pediatric protocols had improved overall and event-free survival.

Source: Advani A, Hunger S, Burnett A, Acute Leukemia in Adolescents and Young Adults. Semin Oncol. 2009; 36:213-226.

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A terrific resource if you are in the NY area, or want to read some excellent blogs and advise for newly diagnosed AYA (or any) breast cancer patients. Elyn Jacobs is a breast cancer survivor and cancer coach with a great deal of wisdom to share - http://elynjacobs.wordpress.com/

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