Conditions + Treatments

Cancer in Children

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Contact Dana-Farber/ Boston Children's

We lace 'em up every morning knowing that in some significant way we will have made a stride toward the common mission: decreasing the burden of cancer.


While childhood cancer is a potentially life-threatening condition requiring intensive treatment, the majority of pediatric cancers are treatable. And thanks to recent advances in therapies, many forms of childhood cancer are curable using a combination of treatments, including surgery, radiation and chemotherapy.

  • In general, childhood cancers are very rare compared to adult cancers.

  • Children generally get different forms of cancer than adults.

  • About 10,000 to 12,000 children are diagnosed with cancer each year in the United States (compared to about 1.5 million adults).

  • The most common forms of pediatric cancer are leukemia, brain tumors and lymphoma.

  • In almost all cases, the cause of childhood cancer is unknown.

  • Compared with cancer in adults, many pediatric cancers are more successfully treated.

How Boston  Children’s Hospital approaches childhood cancer

  • Your child’s core care team will include pediatric oncologists, radiotherapists, surgeons, pathologists, radiologists, nurses and psychosocial and physical therapy specialists, among many others.

  • Our cancer team, ranked one of the top in the country by U.S. News & World Report, treats children with every kind of cancer and blood disease, from the most common to the rarest.

  • We are New England’s Phase I referral center for the Boston Children’s Oncology Group, so we offer clinical trials of investigational drugs unavailable at other regional centers.

  • We provide long-term treatment and childhood cancer survivor support through Dana-Farber’s David B. Perini, Jr. Quality of Life Clinic.

Read more about our center.

We are grateful to have been ranked #1 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best children's hospitals in the nation for the third year in a row, an honor we could not have achieved without the patients and families who inspire us to do our very best for them. Thanks to you, Boston Children's is a place where we can write the greatest children's stories ever told.”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

Boston Children's Hospital 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 617-355-6000 | 800-355-7944