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Causes of Childhood Cancer

Although it can be difficult to understand the causes of childhood cancer – particularly why cancer develops in specific children but not others – there are certain risk factors that can place an individual at a higher risk for the disease. Such risk factors may include:

  • Genetic disorders and other inherited genetic mutations (in very rare cases)
  • Having a history of exposure to radiation or previous cancer treatment
  • Childhood infections (some forms of leukemia are theorized to result from an incredibly rare, abnormal reaction to a typical childhood infection)

At Tampa General Hospital’s Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Program - our team of medical and radiation oncologists, hematologists, surgeons, nurses, and other supportive care providers are prepared to assist patients up to the age of 21 with the diagnosis and treatment of all cancers – no matter their origin. We can provide care for all kids with cancer, from infants to young adults. Whether patients have leukemia (the most common type of pediatric cancer), tumors of the brain or spine, lymphoma, or any other form of cancer, our team will take a highly specialized approach to treatment, addressing every patient’s specific needs.

Although research has not been able to pinpoint the causes of childhood cancer just yet, our team can provide precise diagnostic testing to locate cancerous cells and determine how far the disease has spread. Using that information, our team can then treat the cancer using chemotherapy, radiation therapy, targeted therapy, surgery, or some combination thereof. Plus, as a member of the Children’s Oncology Group, we are able to offer kids with cancer the chance to participate in the latest clinical studies, helping them gain access to the newest and most innovative therapies currently available.

Tampa General Hospital’s Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Program typically can schedule non-emergency patients for examination within a week after receiving a call. There is always a physician on call for emergency situations.

For a physician referral, please call 1-800-822-3627.