Late mortality after hematopoietic SCT for a childhood malignancy

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Hematopoietic SCT (HSCT) has been used as a curative therapy for pediatric malignancies. Survivors of HSCT are at risk for disease recurrence, late morbidity and mortality. We assessed late mortality (≥2 years post-HSCT) in a population-based cohort of children who underwent HSCT for a malignancy. Mortality outcomes were determined by linking a clinical transplant database with the Canadian province of Ontario's pediatric cancer mortality files. Seven hundred and fifty-four children underwent HSCT (371 allogeneic, 383 autologous). Of the 479 (63.5%) who were alive ≥2 years post HSCT, 98 (20.5%) suffered a late death. Late mortality in the allogeneic HSCT group was 14.9% (median follow-up 10.0 years; range: 2.0-25.6 years), mainly due to relapse of the primary malignancy (64.7%). Chronic GVHD and second malignancies were not major causes of late mortality. A total of 25.5% suffered a late death following autologous HSCT (median follow-up 6.7 years; range: 2.0-22.2 years). Recurrence of the primary malignancy accounted for 87.5% of these deaths. Recurrence of the primary malignancy is the predominant cause of late mortality after HSCT. In contrast to studies of adult patients, non-relapse mortality is less common in children, and death due to chronic GVHD and secondary malignancies is uncommon.

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