Autologous bone marrow transplantation in childhood : A follow-up study
Abstract: Autologous bone marrow transplantation (ABMT) was introduced to the Uppsala UniversityHospital in 1985. Since then, 50 children (<18 years of age) with haematological malignantdisease have been treated with ABMT. Most of these children had experienced a relapse oftheir disease, and ABMT was superimposed on preceding heavy treatment. The aim of thepresent study was to evaluate late adverse effects in five areas:Pulmonary and cardiac function were studied longitudinally. Six months after ABMT, adecrease in lung volumes and flow rates was observed in patients who received total bodyirradiation in their preparative regimen . There were signs of recovery during the following sixmonths, although incomplete. No further deterioration of pulmonary functioning wasobserved from the follow-up visit at 1 year after ABMT and thereafter. Cardiac function, asmeasured by echocardiography and radionuclide ventriculography, did not change frombefore ABMT until the last follow-up measurement (median 7 years post-transplant).Neuropsychological and psychosocial functioning were assessed in two cross-sectionalstudies. In addition, tests for general intelligence had been performed longitudinally.Intelligence test results did not change over time. Selective neuropsychological deficits andlearning difficulties were found despite normal results in general intelligence tests. Parentsand teachers reported more behavioural problems, mostly of the internalising type, andparents reported lower school competence relative to normative samples. According to theself-reports, most children were well adapted to the altered life conditions. It was concludedthat the psychosocial functioning seen in children treated with ABMT was dependent on thetype of informant used.Prepubertal growth was normal and relative height did not change from initial diagnosisexcept in those children treated with cranial irradiation before ABMT. Measurements ofgrowth hormone were made longitudinally, where all children showed signs of impairedspontaneous growth hormone secretion, irrespective of previous cranial irradiation orpreparative regimen.
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