Neuroblastoma is the cancer of the nervous system. lts usually diagnosed in small young children and young infants; it frequently develops before the child is born. lts important to know that the side effects that usually affect the kid involve the symptoms of the neuroblastoma as well as those of the aggressive treatments for cancer. By considering addressing the two side effects, youll be able to help the kid affected by the neuroblastoma as pain-free and comfortable as possible.
Neuroblastoma is a cancerous neoplasm that initially starts in the nerve tissue of the infants and the very young kids, often before birth. The cancer can remain undetected until its growth and the pressure on the organs and the normal tissue that usually surround it. There are three different types of the neuroblastoma: the low risk, the intermediate risk and higher risk. If untreated, Neuroblastoma continues to grow and may even metastasize (spread or move to other body parts). The genetic abnormality is mostly the cause of the neuroblastoma; however the cause of the abnormality is yet to be unknown. The Neuroblastoma is somewhat less likely to affect a girl child than a male.
The neoplasm is a tumor or an abnormal tissue characterized by the rapid growth of cells, they can either be benign (harmless) or be malignant (cancerous growth). The Neoplasms typically continues to grow and form a very distinct mass of the cellular tissue. Neuroblastoma kind of neoplasm is usually malignant.
Where Neuroblastomas are Found
Around a third of neuroblastomas usually start in the tissues called the adrenal gland. The adrenal glands are near the kidneys, in the body abdominal cavity. The adrenal glands exude ﬂuids that usually aid in the normal functioning in the kids body, especially the nervous system. Other neuroblastomas take place in ganglia (nerve cell clusters). In some instances, the neuroblastomas can be detected before birth of the child using the fetal ultrasound.
Symptoms of Neuroblastoma
The effects or symptoms of the growing tumor usually vary; depending on the size and location of the tumor and how rapidly its spreading. These may include the abdominal swelling or mass, the tumors around the eyes (causing swelling and bruising), usually changes during urination from the compression in the kidneys or bladder, and limping, pain, paralysis or weakness.
Other symptoms usually include shortness of breath or a chronic cough (if the tumor is in the chest), fever, diarrhea, increased heart rate and high blood pressure, weight loss and loss of appetite.
Treatment for Neuroblastoma
The treatment for the low-risk and the intermediate risk neuroblastoma may include surgery, observation alone for some infants, the surgery thats followed by the chemotherapy or the low dose chemotherapy, and the radiation therapy.
The high risk neuroblastoma could require a high dose chemotherapy, then by surgery; the radiation to the tumor; the stem cell transplant; the monoclonal anti-body therapy (after chemotherapy); and the clinical trial of the radiation therapy using the radioactive iodine (done prior to the stem cell transplant).
Side Effects of the Treatment
The side effects usually vary, due to the methods used to treat neuroblastoma. The general side effects could include impaired or slowed growth, secondary cancer, thyroid problems and infertility (due to the chemotherapy drugs). Total body irradiation or the brain irradiation might cause difﬁculty in thought and thinking processing. The side effects of the radiation and chemotherapy are pain, vomiting and nausea, weariness, hair loss, loss of appetite and the suppression of the childs immune system.