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Clinical update: recognising brain tumours early in children

Journal title
Community practitioner : the journal of the Community Practitioners' & Health Visitors' Association
Publication year
Paul, S. P.; Debono, R.; Walker, D.

Brain tumour accounts for a quarter of all childhood cancers and is the leading cause of cancer related deaths in children. Initial symptoms can be misleading and is often misinterpreted as being caused by a less serious childhood illness. Available statistics show that it takes almost three times longer for the brain tumour in children to get diagnosed in the United Kingdom in comparison to other developed countries. Head Smart campaign was launched in the UK in 2011 with an aim to decrease the time from the onset of symptoms to diagnosis; initial results have been highly encouraging. Community practitioners play an important role in not only identifying symptoms (by following Head Smart symptom card) and selecting patients for reassurance, review or early referral but also by providing valuable support to the family post diagnosis in the community.

Research abstracts