Childhood Cancer

General Information

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Any cancer occurring in children between the age group of 0-19 years is considered as childhood cancer, though the upper age limit sometimes changes according to different countries.

Every two minutes a child is diagnosed with cancer. The types of cancers found in children are different from those of adults. No child needs to fight this alone. 

Most childhood cancers are highly treatable, provided prompt and effective treatment is accessible. In resource rich countries, three out of four children now survive. But in developing and emerging economies, children are often not diagnosed, or diagnosed too late, and there is a lack of access to information and life-saving treatment. There is a specialty in medicine that deals exclusively in childhood cancer called pediatric oncology. It is important to know that such a department exists in many hospitals. We have given below a brief idea about the various types of childhood cancers, treatment methods and a list of hospitals in South India that have pediatric oncology departments.



This is the most common cancer in children which affects the bone marrow and the blood. ALL (Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia) and AML (Acute Myelogenous Leukemia) are two different types of Leukemia or blood cancer. It accounts for 30% of all cancers.

Brain and spinal cord tumours

This amounts to 26% of all childhood cancers. It includes brain and central nervous system tumours. Some of the tumours are Glioma, Medulloblastoma, Astrocytoma, Ependymoma.


About 6% of cancers are Neuroblastomas. It is usually found in children below the age of 10 and rarely above that age. The tumour can be anywhere but mostly found in the abdomen and can be noticed as swelling.

Wilm’s Tumour

Mostly seen in children of 3-4 years of age and rarely above the age of 6. It starts in the kidney and is also known as Nephroblastoma. It accounts for 5% of Childhood cancer


Lymphomas often start in Lymph nodes and tissues and can affect the bone marrow and other organs also. Two major kinds of Lymphomas are Hodgkins and Non-Hodgkins. Hodgkins Lymphoma affects in early adulthood and or late adulthood and accounts for 3% of cancers. Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma makes up about 5% of cancers and is found in both children (usually above 3 years) and adults.


Retinoblastoma is the cancer of the eye and accounts to 2% of all cancers. It may be noticed as a white glare of the eye after a flash picture is taken. It is usually identified under the age of 3. Some Retinoblastomas are hereditary, if so are bilateral. Not all bilateral Retinoblastomas are hereditary.

Bone Cancer & Rhabdomyosarcoma

As the name suggests, it is the cancer of the bone and amounts to 3% of all childhood cancers. Two common ones are Osteosarcoma and Ewing Sarcoma. Rhabdomyosarcoma is the most common type of sarcoma in children, about 3%. It affects the skeletal muscles.


Children tend to respond better to treatments when compared to adults. Treatment includes  surgery, chemotherapy, radiation or bone marrow transplant. Chemotherapy and radiation tend to have side-effects in some children in the long run and hence need to be carefully followed-up.

Awareness about the treatments available, early detection and diagnosis and supportive care facilities are key factors that help in providing the right care at the right time. It is important to be well informed on the various resources available regarding childhood cancer. Please do contact us if you need further information or assistance.

Treatment Centres for Pediatric Oncology in South India


  1. Regional Cancer Centre, Trivandrum
  2. Kottayam Medical College Hospital
  3. Lakeshore Hospital, Ernakulam
  4. Well Care Hospital. Ernakulam
  5. Amrita Hospital, Ernakulam
  6. Aster Medcity, Ernakulam
  7. Lourdes Hospital, Ernakulam
  8. Kozhikode Medical College Hospital
  9. MVR Memorial Hospital, Kozhikode
  10. Baby Memorial Hospital, Kozhikode
  11. Malabar Cancer Centre, Thalassery

Tamil Nadu

  1. Adayar Cancer Institute, Chennai
  2. Apollo Cancer Hospital, Chennai
  3. Apollo Cancer Hospital, Madurai
  4. Gleneagles Global Hospital, Chennai
  5. Meenakshi Mission Hospital, Madurai
  6. J Vishwanathan Memorial Hospital, Trichy
  7. Aravind Eye Hospital, Madurai
  8. Sankara Nethralaya, Chennai
  9. Aravind Eye Hospital, Coimbatore
  10. Coimbatore Medical College Hospital
  11. Ramakrishna Hospital, Coimbatore
  12. Coimbatore Cancer Foundation
  13. PSG Hospital, Coimbatore
  14. Kovai Medical Centre Hospital, Coimbatore


  1. Kidwai Memorial Institue of Oncology, Bangalore
  2. Manipal Hospitals
  3. Apollo Cancer Hospital, Bangalore
  4. Cytecare, Bangalore
  5. HCG Institute of Oncology, Bangalore
  6. St. John’s Hospital, Bangalore
  7. Asia Colombia, Bangalore
  8. Shankara Nethralaya, Bangalore
  9. Naryayana Hridralaya, Bangalore

Andhra Pradesh, Telangana

  1. Rainbow Hospitals, Hyderabad
  2. KIMS Hospitals
  3. American Oncology Institute, Hyderabad
  4. Mahatma Gandhi Cancer Hospital & Research Institute, Vishakapatnam
  5. American Oncology Institute, Guntur
  6. Omega Hospitals, Agatha Varappadu
  7. Gayatri Woman & Child Care Hospitals, Vijayawada
  8. HCG Curie City Cancer Centre, Vijayawada
  9. SVIMS Cancer Centre, Thirupati
  10. Apollo Cancer Hospital, Hyderabad
  11. MNJ, Hyderabad