Learning Issues After Childhood Cancer
Making a plan for success
Teachers, parents, and medical professional can create an optimal learning environment for childhood cancer survivors.
Chemotherapy, radiation or brain surgery to treat childhood cancer often causes “cognitive late effects” – problems with thinking, remembering, and learning, particularly in children who were younger than five when undergoing treatment.
Although many children will not experience any ill effects, parents and teachers need to be aware of the potential for these problems so the children can be monitored closely and provided with extra help, if needed.
Signs of common learning problems include trouble with:
- Understanding math
- Using calculators or computers
- Planning and organizational skills
- Social maturity and social skills
If a childhood cancer survivor begins experiencing any of the above learning problems or is having trouble at school, a medical professional should perform an evaluation. By working together, the child’s teachers, parents and physicians can help create an optimum learning environment and develop a plan for schooling success.