Coins 4 Kids

Taking on childhood cancer one penny at a time

Symptoms & Facts

Signs of Childhood Cancer

Continued, unexplained weight loss
Headaches, often with early morning vomiting
Increased swelling or persistent pain in bones, joints, back, or legs
Lump or mass, especially in the abdomen, neck, chest, pelvis, or armpits
Development of excessive bruising, bleeding, or rash
Constant infections

whitish color behind the pupil, bruised black eye, droopy lid
Nausea which persists or vomiting without nausea
Constant tiredness or noticeable paleness
Eye or vision changes which occur suddenly and persist
Recurrent or persistent fevers of unknown origin

Childhood cancer is rare. It is unlikely that your child will develop cancer. Still, as a parent, you need to be aware of the symptoms of childhood cancer.

Observe your child for any sudden, persistent changes in health or behavior as listed above. Since most of the symptoms of cancer can also be attributed to benign conditions, the diagnosis of cancer can be a long process. You must trust your own instinct and work as a team with your doctor, using your knowledge of your child and your doctor's knowledge of medicine to protect your child's health.

The Hard Cold Facts

*Neuroblastoma is the most common cancer in infants with an incidence rate of almost double that of leukemia,yet most have never heard of it.
*Neuroblastoma is predominantly a cancer of early childhood, with two thirds of the cases presenting in children younger than 5. The average age at diagnosis is 2 years old.
*Neuroblastoma is a solid tumor cancer that originates in the nerve tissue of the neck, chest, abdomen or pelvis, but most commonly in the adrenal gland.
*It is a very aggressive cancer with almost 70% of children having mestastatic disease (spread to other parts of the body) at diagnosis.
*Neuroblastoma is the third most common cancer in children under 18.
*Neuroblastoma has one of the lowest survival rates of all pediatric cancers.
*The survival rates of high risk children is 30% at best.
*There is no known cause or cure.

  It doesn't have the money to get any better.

 It is widely recognized that progress in cancer survival rates among children is the result of successful clinical trials where work from our nation's laboratories is translated into clinical application.  Due to the historical lack of Neuroblastoma research funding & awareness, there are no widespread FDA approved drugs or treatments available today designed to specifically treat Neuroblastoma. Treatments include chemotherapy drugs designed for different types of adult cancers. More than 40% of "fully insured" families with a child with Neuroblastoma declare bankruptcy due to the high costs of treatment, often considered experimental. Standard care for 70% of children with cancer require participation in clinical trials.

Did you know?
Although the large, broad cancer organizations do great things, very little of their resources go to Pediatric Cancer Research. The American Cancer Society provides only 1.85% of dollars spent on research, to be spread over all 12 types of childhood cancers.  (*July 2005, Research Department, American Cancer Society, Inc.) 

"If you see a bald child suffering from cancer and feel compelled to help cure childhood cancer, please research organizations that put children first and support those organizations."

We must do better!

* In the past 20 years only one new cancer drug has been approved for pediatric use.
* Only 3 percent of the budget from the National Cancer Institute goes towards Pediatric Cancer Research.
* September is Pediatric Cancer Awareness month, which nationally goes largely unrecognized.
* The government recently cut the budget for Childhood Cancer Research.
* 14,000 children will be diagnosed this year with cancer. That is the size of 2 average classrooms every single day, year after year.
* Currently there is between 30-40,000 children being treated for cancer in the US.
* Pharmaceutical companies fund over 50% of adult cancer research, but virtually nothing for kids.
* Pediatric cancer research does not receive nearly as much funding as adult cancer research projects. Neuroblastoma research dollars are scarce as most money is diverted to well-publicized adult forms of cancer.
* Historically, advances in pediatric research have yielded treatment models and genetic information that greatly benefit adult cancer patients. (This is well documented by professional research cooperatives like the Children's Oncology Group); the reverse is not always true.

For more information :  Little Patients Losing Patience: Pediatric Cancer Drug Development

Now you know ......
A flip of the coin is not the odds any child should have to face. More research... more kids saved.
Every penny counts!


*"Neuroblastoma", Norman J. Lacayo, MD Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Division of Hematology-oncology, Stanford Unviersity and Lucille Salter Packard, Children's Hospital, February  10, 2005. Available at:  *source: The Super Jake Foundation
*Source: The Children's Oncology Group and efficacy of complete resection for High Risk Neuroblastoma . A Children's Cancer Group Study.
*Source:     American Association for Cancer Research/Molecular Cancer Therapeutics

More information about neuroblastoma: 
ACOR General Information

Symptoms & Facts