Treatment

The type of treatment a child may receive will be based on a number of factors, including the nature of the cancer and well-being of the child.  Generally the three types of treatment are:

  • Surgery: Surgery involves the removal of cancerous tumour(s) from the affected areas of the body. The type of surgery performed depends on the site of the cancerous tumour(s). A doctor will discuss any surgical procedures with the family if surgery is the best treatment option.

  • Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy involves the use of drugs to damage cancerous cells in the body. Unfortunately they also produce unwanted side-effects by damaging cells that are actively growing. This can lead to hair loss and mouth ulcers among other side-effects. Chemotherapy for children with cancer or a haematological disorder is given in the Royal Hospital for Sick Children.

  • Radiotherapy: Radiotherapy is the use of radiation on a specific part of the body. The intention is for the radiation to destroy abnormal, cancerous cells.  The abnormal cells are destroyed and any normal cells that may be damaged should grow back.  Radiotherapy is given to patients in the Northern Ireland Cancer Centre which is based beside the Belfast City Hospital site. Read more information on Radiotherapy in the Cancer Centre. 

Read more information on the treatments for children with cancer.