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Childhood Cancer: Death by Inaction

Via the American Academy of Pediatrics

Childhood Leukemia: A Preventable Disease

"Between 1975 and 2012, incidence of childhood leukemia in the United States has increased 33% for acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and 42% for acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Moreover, Hispanic children in the United States experience a higher incidence rate (and increase in rate) of childhood ALL compared with non-Hispanics."

"The side effects of treatment (both short- and long-term), secondary cancers, and the emotional and financial costs to children and families are all reasons that we should not settle for improved medical care, but also focus on primary prevention of this disease."

There are no prevention programs for childhood leukemia in the United States. 

"The history of environmental health is rife with examples of “late-learned lessons”. These are chemicals with early warning signs of health impacts that took many years and often decades to prove conclusively the hazard, during which time they continued to be used and in some cases accumulated in the environment. Well-known examples include PCBs, DDT, lead, and tobacco smoke."

"An example of medicine taking timely action based on limited evidence suggesting likely harm but without determination of causation is sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). In 1992, an American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) policy statement suggested that infants be placed to sleep on their backs or sides rather than prone, despite the lack of prospective randomized clinical trials. Some had argued for these trials and better understanding of mechanisms of action before undertaking any intervention, but in 1994 the American Academy of Pediatrics launched the “Back to Sleep” campaign to discourage prone sleeping and by 2000, the US mortality for SIDS had dropped to 50% of the 1990 rates."

How long will policy makers ignore the science and our moral obligation that demands that we do more to protect children from toxins that cause cancer, the #1 disease that kills kids? If Trump's budget is implemented there is no doubt whatsoever that diseases, including cancer, will increase for adults and children. And his new 'health care' plan will ensure that millions of sick people will have limited or no access to treatment services.

If you care about children then I urge you to contact your representatives in Congress today! Tell them they will be voted out of office if they vote in favor of the #TrumpBudget or the Affordable Care Act replacement! Both of those policies will cause irreparable damage to our children's health & future. Tell Congress to stand up for kids, NOW!

Find the contact info for your representatives in the House and Senate, call or write to them TODAY! Our children are depending on us.

Sunscreen Myths & Facts

The National Cancer Institute has recently updated its skin cancer prevention info:

There are three main types of skin cancer:

1) Basal cell carcinoma (BCC)
2) Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC)
3) Melanoma

BCC & SCC are both referred to as nonmelanoma skin cancer (NMSC) and they are also the most common forms of skin cancer, but they have substantially better prognoses than the less common, generally more aggressive, melanoma.

The total number and incidence rate of NMSCs cannot be estimated precisely because reporting to cancer registries is not required.

However, using treatment data from Medicare it is estimated that the total number of persons treated for nonmelanoma in 2012 was about 3 million. That is nearly twice as many as all other types of cancer which totaled about 1.6 million.

The incidence of melanoma has been increasing for at least 30 years and in 2017 it is estimated that 87,110 people in the US will be diagnosed with melanoma and approximately 9,730 will die of the disease.

Contrary to popular belief (and egregious marketing), current evidence indicates that using sunscreen does not reduce risk of nonmelanoma or melanoma.

Sunscreen may reduce the incidence of sunburn, but there is no evidence that it reduces the risk of skin cancer. In addition, many sunscreens contain toxic ingredients that are known or suspected of causing serious health problems, some are even linked to an increased risk of skin cancer. To find a safer option use EWG's Sunscreen Guide and follow these skin cancer prevention tips:

1) Seek shade or stay indoors from 10 AM - 2 PM
2) Avoid intentional tanning & tanning beds
3) Cover up - wear long sleeves & pants, a hat with wide brim and UV-blocking sunglasses
4) Keep newborns out of the sun