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Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. A time of year extra attention is asked worldwide for childhood cancer. And that is very necessary. In the Netherlands 1 in 4 children with cancer pass away. To increase the chance of survival, the treatment must be improved.

Pediatric oncology in the Netherlands
At the Princess Máxima Center we treat all children with cancer in the Netherlands. Here, doctors, nurses and scientists work intensively together to increase the chances of survival. They also work to improve the quality of life of children with cancer. So that the treatment has as little impact as possible on the child's life, now and in the long term.

From 75% to 100% chance to survive
To achieve our mission, to cure every child with cancer with optimal quality of life, there is still a lot of work to do. And we could really use your help with that. Because not all facilities in our center, which are so essential for child and family, are reimbursed by health insurers. In addition, with your financial support we can also accelerate scientific breakthroughs. And thus improve the treatment of childhood cancer. Together, we make a difference in the lives of children with cancer. 

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The right dose for every child

At one point in their treatment, all children with cancer are confronted with chemotherapy – just like Quinn. By measuring drug levels in the blood, the dose can be better adapted to each individual child. Pediatric oncologist Inge van der Sluis talks about the steps towards personalized treatment.

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Clinical studies for better treatments

Just like Yuna, almost all children in the Máxima Center participate in one or more clinical trials. These are essential for improving treatments for childhood cancer. Research nurse Charlotte van Aart, guides children and parents who take part in a clinical trial and explains the practical consequences.

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Administering chemotherapy with taste and color

Saar receives oral chemotherapy. Her ‘princess medicine’ is a purple drink and the dose fits on a spoon. The administration of medication to children requires creative, child-friendly solutions. The Máxima pharmacy provides these. A large pill can sometimes be converted into a few small pills, chemotherapy can sometimes be taken on a spoon. And if that has a bad taste, sometimes a flavor and color can be added so that children are challenged to swallow the medicine themselves.

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New insights into established chemotherapies

Turtles that eat the cancer cells in her body, that’s how Anne sees her chemotherapy medication in her imagination. Research group leader and hospital pharmacist Alwin Huitema explains his research on how chemo works, which lays the foundation for better treatment.

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Make a digital sand drawing and draw attention to childhood cancer

In the videos of Quinn, Yuna, Saar and Anne, you will see how de Zandtovenaar creates a beautiful sand drawing to go with the fantasy names for their treatment. Now it's your turn. Because through this tool you can make your own, digital sand drawing with which you can draw attention to childhood cancer. The only thing you have to do is carefully move your mouse over the screen. Then you can download your sand drawing and share it with friends on social media.

Create sand drawing