Cancer

Updated 27 July 2015

Cancer survivors more likely to return to hospital

In a study, the hospitalisation rate for cancer survivors was 1.5 times higher than for the control group.

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Young adult cancer survivors are more likely to be hospitalised than people who never had cancer, a new study finds.

Hospitalisation rate twice as high

Researchers analysed data from more than 20,000 people in Ontario, Canada, who had their first cancer diagnosis between ages 20 and 44 and had lived at least five years cancer-free. They were compared with a control group of more than 100,000 young adults never diagnosed with cancer.

Read: 'I used cannabis oil to cure my cancer' 

Up to 20 years after being declared cancer-free, the overall hospitalisation rate for cancer survivors was 1.5 times higher than for people in the control group, the researchers found.

The rate of hospitalisation was twice as high for survivors of gastrointestinal cancer, leukaemia, bladder or kidney cancer, colorectal cancer, brain cancer and lymphoma, the study revealed.

Read: Blacks likely to get chemo for colon cancer

The study was published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

"Even when young adults survive cancer, the cancer still has an impact on their lives and their long-term health," study author Dr Nancy Baxter, a colorectal surgeon at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto, said in a hospital news release.

"And this age group still has a lot of life to live," she added.

Previous studies have found that as many as two-thirds of childhood cancer survivors have long-term complications from surgery, chemotherapy or radiation treatment.

Read more:

South African rooibos and honeybush teas could fight cancer 

Many cancer survivors have lingering problems 

Cancer survival depends on specific cell activity

Image: Cancer patient with friend from Shutterstock

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