Worldwide disparities in childhood leukemia survival rates have narrowed in recent years, but there are still wide gaps between developed and developing nations, a new study shows. In some countries, the five-year rate of survival is nearly twice as high as in others.
Why it matters: The findings underscore the need for more advanced medical diagnosis and treatment options in low- and middle-income countries where 80% of childhood leukemia cases occur.
What the data show: Researchers looked at individual leukemia patient data for nearly 90,000 children from 198 cancer registries in 53 countries. The five-year survival rate for acute lymphoblastic leukemia was 92% in Germany, 89% in the UK, and 88% in the United States for the most recent data available. It was 69% in China and just 52% in Colombia.