Childhood cancer – long term follow-up

LEAP is a programme to help children and young people with any long-term health problems they might have after their cancer treatment has finished.

What is LEAP?

The Long Term Assessment Programme – or LEAP – is a continuation of the follow-up care your child received at their cancer treatment centre.

undefinedThe LEAP team includes your child's oncologist, a nurse specialist who has knowledge of late effects of cancer treatment and a clinical psychologist who is available if your child has need of psychosocial support at any stage.

The LEAP programme is endorsed by the Paediatric Society of NZ, the Starship Foundation & the National Child Cancer Network.

What are late effects?

During treatment, your child's oncologist and nurse will have talked to you or your child about the specific long-term effects that may occur from the disease or treatment your child was having.

At that time, because the aim was giving your child the best chance of surviving, you probably did not think too much about these late effects. After treatment is completed checking for late effects becomes more important.

Certain chemotherapy drugs, radiotherapy and/ or surgery as well as the disease your child had may cause late effects but it depends on:

  • The age your child was during treatment.
  • The type of cancer and treatment.
  • The type & doses of the specific treatments (e.g. chemotherapy, radiation).
  • The site of the treatment (radiation & surgery).

How long does my child need to keep coming to the clinic?

undefinedThis is different for everyone and often depends on how old they are, what treatment they had and whether they have any late effects that are causing them health problems, learning problems or other concerns that affect their quality of life.

Most young people are usually discharged between 18 and 21 years of age.

Learn more

Late Effects Assessment Programme (LEAP) Kidshealth (NZ)
American Childhood Cancer Organisation USA
Children's Cancer and Leukaemia Group UK   

Credits: Paediatric Society of NZ, Starship Foundation & National Child Cancer Network, 2013.