PURPOSE: Childhood cancer survivors (CCS) are at risk for increased morbidity and reduced quality of life associated with treatment-related late effects. In Germany, however, only a few of the more than 40,000 CCS registered in the German Childhood Cancer Registry (GCCR) currently benefit from adequate clinical long-term follow-up (LTFU) structures. To establish a comprehensive knowledge base on CCS' long-term health in Germany, a database was developed in cooperation with the GCCR. Following a first evaluation phase at two German university centres, this database will be implemented more widely within Germany allowing longitudinal documentation of clinical LTFU data.
METHODS: The feasibility study cohort comprised 208 CCS aged 18 or older whose medical, mental and psychosocial health data were collected during routine LTFU or first clinic visits in adult care. CCS were enrolled from 04/2021 to 12/2022, and data entry was completed by 03/2023. Descriptive data analysis was conducted. All CCS were stratified into three risk groups (RG) based on their individual risk for developing late effects resulting from their respective diagnoses and treatments.
RESULTS: Chronic health conditions of various organ systems associated with late and long-term effects of cancer therapy affected CCS in all RG supporting the clinical relevance of risk-adapted LTFU. Enrolment into the database was feasible and broadly accepted amongst CCS.
CONCLUSION: Implementation of a clinical follow-up care infrastructure and database in Germany will pave the way to collect clinically evaluated and regularly updated health data of potentially over 40,000 German CCS and facilitate future national and international cooperation.