Childhood cancer is a rare and complex disease. It can occur at any age from before birth to late adolescence. Types of childhood cancers include neuroblastoma, soft tissue sarcoma, leukemia, lymphoma, brain and spinal cord tumors, osteosarcoma, and many more.
Nurses perform many important functions for children undergoing cancer treatment. Nurses are often the first point of contact for patients and their families, both inside and outside the hospital. The resident nurse is the primary care provider during the patient’s hospitalization. Outpatient nurses assist doctors in collecting information and providing care to patients.
We know that wound and skin care is extremely important for children with cancer. Many problems can be prevented by regular testing and cleaning.
Skin is the largest organ in the human body. It is the body’s first line of defense and acts as a protective barrier. Skin, together with other organs and soft tissues, also plays a role in protecting, regulating and supporting the body.
Under normal circumstances, the skin has a remarkable ability to heal and regenerate. In healthy children, most skin breaks heal without further problems. But cancer and cancer treatments can weaken the immune system. Even small incisions can lead to infection. Skin problems can be a side effect of certain cancer treatments. And children’s skin is not as fully developed as adult skin, so skin care needs can vary greatly by age.
It’s important for families to talk about wounds and skin care during cancer treatment. While careful monitoring and regular skin exams are important, children need to be aware of their skin and speak up when they see signs of problems. Patients may feel uncomfortable or embarrassed to bring up wounds and skin problems. It is not uncommon for children to speak up only when they feel extremely unwell. They may also try to avoid examining certain parts of the body.
Talking about skin care and its importance can help kids become more aware of their skin. Families, including patients and caregivers, should watch for signs of wound development and inform the medical team of any discomfort.
Typically, a child’s medical team consists of many nurses performing different but often related functions. This enables teams to provide complex, diverse services. Nurses perform a variety of vital and interrelated functions, from administering drugs to answering complex medical questions. Like all health care providers, nurses work with other members of the health care team.
There’s still a lot of demand for professional nurses, thus the application of nursing college is always open for those who hope to give a hand on medical care for children.