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Universidad y Salud

Print version ISSN 0124-7107
On-line version ISSN 2389-7066


GONZALEZ-CASAGUA, María Sofía; BERMEO-CALDERON, Juan David; LAVERDE-GAONA, Luis Alfonso  and  TAFURT-CARDONA, Yaliana. Environmental carcinogens associated with childhood cancer. Univ. Salud [online]. 2019, vol.21, n.3, pp.270-276. ISSN 0124-7107.


The American Cancer Society indicates that each year 163,300 cases of childhood cancer are diagnosed worldwide. In Colombia, 300 deaths were reported from this cause in minors during 2015. Currently, the main etiological associations of childhood cancer are ionizing radiation and exposure to pesticides, making it an emerging priority in the global agenda for children's health.


To identify carcinogenic factors associated with the increased risk in the onset of childhood cancer.

Materials and methods:

A review of scientific articles in English and Spanish was carried out in PubMed, ScienceDirect, SciELO, and statistical publications of the World Health Organization, American Cancer Association and the National Cancer Institute of Colombia.


Different carcinogenic factors were described as ionizing radiation, biological agents, dietary patterns, exposure to pesticides, tobacco and asbestos, highlighting their association in the development of childhood cancer.


The recognition of the carcinogenic agents frequently associated with childhood cancer, allows the identification of their impact on health, and generates more effective preventive measures that can reduce the worldwide burden of the disease.

Keywords : Child; neoplasms; carcinogens; risk factors; environmental exposure.

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