Survivors of childhood central nervous system cancer show affected self-identity

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According to a new study published in the journal Neuro-Oncology, researchers from the Korlinska Institutet in Sweden have found that patients treated for central nervous system (CNS) cancer during childhood or adolescence can display altered self-perception and self-identify later in adulthood.

For the study, researchers followed 700 adult survivors of childhood CNS cancer who were diagnosed between 1992 and 2001. Researchers compared these patients to a control group from the general population. They studied how the cancer, the treatment, and the aftermath affected the patient's health, function, and psychological identity. Psychological identity includes their self-perception and self-esteem, which researchers assessed using a standardized self-report questionnaire.

Results showed that all components of having CNS cancer affected patients' psychological identity later in adulthood. Researchers found survivors more often had a negative self-perception compared with the control group.

For example, in the context of work and friends, 22% and 30% of survivors had a negative self-perception, respectively, while 8% and 17% of the control group had a negative self-perception, respectively.

Results of self-perception were similar across both groups in the context of family. Findings suggest that more preventative measures are necessary to aid in long-term personality development.

Survivors of childhood central nervous system cancer show affected self-identity
Patients treated for CNS cancer during childhood can display altered self-perception later in adulthood.
Patients who have been treated for cancer of the central nervous system (brain tumours) in childhood or adolescence can show affected self-perception and self-identity in adulthood. This is concluded in a recent study from Karolinska Institutet in Sweden which is being published in the scientific journal Neuro-Oncology. Undesirable persistent late-effects affect a considerable number of adults who survived childhood central nervous system (CNS) cancer.

The study followed 700 adult survivors diagnosed 1992-2001 with a childhood CNS tumour. The study group covered all adult brain tumour survivors in Sweden at the time of start of study. Patients were compared with a control group selected from the general population.

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