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New NCCN Guidelines for Pediatric Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia


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Recently, the National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®) debuted the NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines®) for Pediatric Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL)—the most comprehensive and up-to-date, evidence-based, consensus-driven guidelines for treating children with cancer outside of a clinical trial setting. These new NCCN Guidelines® are the first of several planned to address various pediatric cancers.

Robert W. Carlson, MD

Robert W. Carlson, MD

According to Robert W. Carlson, MD, Chief Executive Officer of NCCN, “Thankfully, in recent years, pediatric ALL has reached a very high cure rate, with almost all low-risk patients achieving long-term survival. However, that means fewer patients are being treated within the context of a clinical trial, which creates the need for treatment guidelines that set sufficient and appropriate standards for care. NCCN’s evidence- and expert-consensus-based approach, proven track record for improving outcomes, and [the] ability to provide rapid updates, allows us to fill this void.”

The NCCN Guidelines for Pediatric ALL span birth through adolescence and into young adulthood. They were designed to overlap with the NCCN Guidelines for Adult ALL and harmonize treatment approaches for patients in the overlapping age range. The recommendations are categorized by risk level, which can also be age-related,; with the highest risk associated with those diagnosed within the first 12 months of life or between the ages of 10 and 21years old.

NCCN plans to continue growing the library of NCCN Guidelines for pediatric cancers, until they it addresses at least 90% of all incident childhood cancers. 


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