Leaving home after cancer in childhood: a measure of social independence in early adulthood

Susanne Vinkel Koch, Anne Mette Tranberg Kejs, Gerda Engholm, Henrik Møller, Christoffer Johansen, Kjeld Schmiegelow

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    BACKGROUND: Previous studies on psychosocial outcomes for childhood and adolescent cancer survivors have found diverse results concerning social independence. As a measure of social independence, we investigated whether cancer survivors displayed the same patterns of leaving home as population-based control group.

    PROCEDURE: We identified 1,597 patients in the Danish Cancer Register, born in 1965-1980, in whom a primary cancer was diagnosed before they reached the age of 20 in the period 1965-1995. The patients were compared with a random sample of the general population (n = 43,905) frequency matched on sex and date of birth. By linking the two cohorts to registers in Statistics Denmark, we obtained socioeconomic data for the period 1980-1997. The relative risk for leaving home was estimated with discrete-time Cox regression models.

    RESULTS: The risk for leaving home of survivors of hematological malignancies and solid tumors did not differ significantly from that of the control cohort. Adjustments for possible socioeconomic confounders did not change this pattern. In contrast, survivors of central nervous system (CNS) tumors had a significantly reduced risk for leaving home, which was most pronounced for men (relative risk, men: 0.66; 95% confidence interval, 0.55-0.80; women: 0.88, 95% confidence interval, 0.80-0.97).

    CONCLUSION: Overall, the psychosocial effects of cancer in childhood or adolescence and its treatment on the survivor and family did not appear to impede social independence in early adulthood, except for survivors of CNS tumors.

    Sider (fra-til)61-70
    Antal sider10
    TidsskriftPediatric Blood and Cancer
    Udgave nummer1
    StatusUdgivet - jul. 2006

    Bibliografisk note

    Copyright 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.


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