7. Psychosocial Aspects of Radiotherapy in Pediatric Cancer Patients

  1. Shulamith Kreitler2,3,4,
  2. Myriam Weyl Ben-Arush5,6 and
  3. Andrés Martin7,8
  1. Shulamith Kreitler2,3,4,
  2. Elena Krivoy5,6 and
  3. Amos Toren1

Published Online: 1 JUL 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781119941033.ch7

Pediatric Psycho-Oncology: Psychosocial Aspects and Clinical Interventions, Second Edition

Pediatric Psycho-Oncology: Psychosocial Aspects and Clinical Interventions, Second Edition

How to Cite

Kreitler, S., Krivoy, E. and Toren, A. (2012) Psychosocial Aspects of Radiotherapy in Pediatric Cancer Patients, in Pediatric Psycho-Oncology: Psychosocial Aspects and Clinical Interventions, Second Edition (eds S. Kreitler, M. W. Ben-Arush and A. Martin), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781119941033.ch7

Editor Information

  1. 2

    School of Psychological Sciences, Tel-Aviv University, Israel

  2. 3

    Psychooncology Research Center, Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, Israel

  3. 4

    Faculty of Social Welfare and Health Sciences, University of Haifa, Israel

  4. 5

    Department of Pediatric Hematology Oncology, Meyer Children's Hospital, Israel

  5. 6

    Meyer Children's Hospital, Rambam Health Care Campus, Technion Israel-Institute of Technology, the Bruce Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, Haifa, Israel

  6. 7

    Child Study Center, Yale University School of Medicine, USA

  7. 8

    Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale-New Haven, New Haven, CT, USA

Author Information

  1. 1

    Pediatric Hematoocology Edmond and Lily Safra Children's Hospital, The Sheba Medical Center-Tel Hashomer affiliated to The Sackler School of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel

  2. 2

    School of Psychological Sciences, Tel-Aviv University, Israel

  3. 3

    Psychooncology Research Center, Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, Israel

  4. 4

    Faculty of Social Welfare and Health Sciences, University of Haifa, Israel

  5. 5

    Department of Pediatric Hematology Oncology, Meyer Children's Hospital, Israel

  6. 6

    Meyer Children's Hospital, Rambam Health Care Campus, Technion Israel-Institute of Technology, the Bruce Rappaport Faculty of Medicine, Haifa, Israel

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 JUL 2012
  2. Published Print: 27 JUL 2012

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781119998839

Online ISBN: 9781119941033

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Keywords:

  • anesthesia;
  • attention;
  • cognitive deficits;
  • distress;
  • IQ;
  • memory;
  • radiotherapy;
  • social adjustment

Summary

The chapter deals with psychosocial effects of radiotherapy (RT) in pediatric cancer patients. The presented materials are based on empirical studies referring specifically to RT. Short-term effects of RT indicate the distress of the pediatric patients which is due especially to physical side effects and having to stay alone and immobilized during RT. Intervention methods to reduce anxiety and the need for anesthesia focus on diverting attention, providing information and teaching coping skills. Major long-term effects of RT concern cognitive and social adjustment. The main cognitive effects of CRT and RT are a decline in IQ and deficits in processing speed, memory and attention that worsen over time and occur especially in children irradiated at a younger age. However, overall academic performance is affected also by environmental factors sometimes overriding the deficits due to disease and RT. The major social and behavioral effects concern interpersonal relations and difficulties in social adjustment.