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Childhood Cancer Survivor Stories: Meet the Patients

Every cancer survivor’s story is different. Some children are diagnosed as infants and do not remember their illness. Other childhood cancer survivors were in their teens or 20s. Cancer had a huge impact on their lives.

There are more than 500,000 childhood cancer survivors in the United States. Often childhood cancer survivors have unique challenges because of the treatment they received. Knowing their stories can help fellow cancer survivors deal with similar issues.

Even though each cancer survivor story may be different, they all have one thing in common – they are all cancer survivors. Read their inspiring stories here. 

  • Breast Cancer Risk

    Studies show that females who receive radiation to the chest have an increased risk of developing breast cancer later in life. Their risk is comparable to women with BRCA gene mutations in the general population.

  • Haley's Story: Staying Alert to Late Effects

    When Haley, 33, a childhood cancer survivor, tells a new health care provider about her medical history, sometimes she detects a “deer in the headlights” type of reaction because childhood cancer is so rare. It’s important to become your own health care advocate and try to ensure your provider gets the information he or she needs before making decisions.

  • Patient Jenny with family at Camp Lighthouse
    Jenny’s Story: Conquer Worry about Child by Focusing on What’s Positive in Life

    Jenny was thrilled when her daughter, Mabry, finished chemotherapy, but she also had concerns — would the cancer come back? Learning how to handle anxiety is important.

  • Katie's Story: Building Relationships with Health Care Providers

    Because childhood cancer is so rare, health care providers may never care for a childhood cancer survivor. Those that do may not be aware of the possible late effects of childhood cancer treatment.

  • Lindsey’s Story: Relapse - Take it Day by Day

    When Lindsey’s leukemia came back after it had been in remission, she turned to others to help her through the tough times –God, family, friends, hospital staff, and the community as a whole.

  • Surviving Survivor Guilt

    Survivor guilt is when you feel guilty after surviving an event that others did not. Not all childhood cancer survivors will experience this feeling, but it’s not uncommon.

Cancer survivor stories of teens and young adults

  • The Girl with Cancer in her... You’re Joking, Right?

    Ever hear the one about a 15-year-old girl diagnosed with cancer in her butt? Unbelievable, right? Cancer in your butt.

  • Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway

    Fear speaks first and fear speaks loudest—but that does not mean it is a voice of reason, nor is it a voice of truth.

  • My Cancer Journey Helped Groom Me into the Young Adult I Am Today

    Javon shares his story of surviving 2 bouts of cancer. Learn how the support of family, friends, and his care team helped him through his cancer journey.

  • Cancer Is a Scary Word

    I was always a very social girl. You could find me hanging out with my friends, going to football games, or shopping. When I was diagnosed at the age of 16 with papillary thyroid cancer, I was nervous to tell my friends. How would they react? Would my relationships change?

  • Patient Evan with family in group photo
    Dealing with Relapse

    When Evan’s cancer relapsed, it was hard news to hear. But he responded with the most powerful defense he could think of – a positive attitude.

  • My Journey Fighting Leukemia

    On December 13, 2016, I was diagnosed with leukemia. That was the day my journey began. A journey full of helplessness, fight, hope, anger, depression, anxiety, weakness, nausea, and many more emotions.

  • "My Setback is a Better Comeback"

    Jakayla shares her story about surviving acute lymphoblastic leukemia twice. Learn how her love of music and faith gave her strength.

  • Take Charge of Your Life

    MJ had a brain tumor called pineoblastoma during his preteen years. Now he is cancer-free and headed to college.

  • Micah holds up medal from climbing paralympics
    Rock Climbing Helps Teen Thrive After Limb-Sparing Surgery

    After having limb-sparing surgery, Micah Winkle had to give up contact sports. After a year of recovery and trying new activities, Micah became a champion rock climber. 

Childhood cancer survivor stories on the Together blog