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Protocol Details

Psychological Benefits of a Normalized camping Experience for Children with Cancer

This study is currently recruiting participants.

Summary | Eligibility | Citations | Contacts

Summary

Number

83-C-0022

Sponsoring Institute

National Cancer Institute (NCI)

Recruitment Detail

Type: Participants currently recruited/enrolled
Gender: Male & Female
Min Age: 7
Max Age: 17

Referral Letter Required

No

Population Exclusion(s)

None

Special Instructions

Federal regulations for the protection of human subjects require approval of clinical trials by your local Institutional Review Board.

Keywords

Childhood Cancer;
Supportive Care;
Psychological Evaluation;
Camp;
Children with Cancer

Recruitment Keyword(s)

None

Condition(s)

HIV Infection;
Neoplasm

Investigational Drug(s)

None

Investigational Device(s)

None

Intervention(s)

None

Supporting Site

National Cancer Institute

Background:

-Cancer has an enormous impact on the psychological and social well-being of the family unit. The life-threatening connotations of cancer single out the ill child from his peer/family group as one who is different, and often unable to maintain a normal lifestyle. Physical sequelae of cancer and its treatment accentuate the differences between these children and their normal peers/siblings.

-It is important that children with cancer be prepared to function outside of protected situations and begin to develop skills of separation and independence. For healthy children, some of these latter skills are acquired by a camping experience. Such an experience for the patient with cancer is frequently precluded by their dependence on medical facilities and the physical limitations of their activities.

-The goal of this study will be to assess the short and long term benefits of the "normalized" camping experience, provided in conjunction with Special Love, Inc., on the patients and staff. In particular, we will seek to determine whether such a comprehensive experience is capable of influencing the attitudes and life experiences of patients and staff in a positive manner.

Objectives:

-To evaluate the impact of an enriched normalized camping experience on the quality of life of the pediatric cancer patient. In particular, attempts will be made to measure the manner in which this experience influences the child's sense of well-being and self-esteem as well as his or her relationship with parents, family, and peers.

-To provide the atmosphere of a camping experience to the professional and volunteer care givers with the hope that they will utilize this experience in improving the quality of their interrelations with the patient population.

Eligibility:

-Children 7-17 years of age who are currently being treated for cancer or are up to 3 years post therapy OR Young adults with cancer (YACers) who are acting as counselors at Camp Fantastic

-All children/young adults will be selected for camp after careful screening by a multidisciplinary committee consisting of medical and program directors.

-At the discretion of the multidisciplinary committee consisting of medical and program directors, special exceptions may be made for children with extenuating circumstances.

Design:

-Assessment of benefit may include interviews with children and families before, during and following camp. Observational data on the child's performance at camp will be noted.

-Medical and nursing personnel will consist of staff from the Pediatric Branch at the NCI, other units within the NIH, and participating institutions.

-Special Love members, the Program Director at the 4-H Center camp (site of the camp) and Pediatric Branch staff at the NCI will coordinate the camp program, taking into account the medical needs of each camper.

-Every attempt will be made to provide a full agenda of age appropriate activities for the patients.

-The length of the camping experience for children with cancer will be for 7 days beginning on a Sunday and extending through the following Saturday morning. Patients will be transported to the camp from the NIH Clinical Center and the Virginia hospitals by bus.

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Eligibility

INCLUSION CRITERIA:

CHILDREN DIAGNOSED WITH CANCER.

-Children 7-17 years of age who are currently being treated for cancer or are up to 3 years post therapy.

OR

Young adults with cancer (YACers) who are acting as counselors at Camp Fantastic.

-All children/young adults will be selected for camp after careful screening by a multidisciplinary committee consisting of medical and program directors. While the state of the child s health will certainly be considered there will be no exclusions for:

-Patients who are receiving intramuscular, intrathecal, oral or intravenous medications or blood products.

-Patients who have had amputations or have other physical defects.

-Patients who become febrile and neutropenic at the onset or during the week of camp will stay at camp on antibiotic therapy providing their condition remains stable.

-At the discretion of the multidisciplinary committee consisting of medical and program directors, special exceptions may be made for patients with extenuating circumstances.

-All children will be officially enrolled and will have an NIH Clinical Center Patient Care Number. The enrollment of a child, signing of protocol consent, and completion of admission paperwork is done in person but under extenuating circumstances it may be done over the phone after the paperwork has been mailed to the parent/guardian. Extenuating circumstances would include a last minute application to camp after the trip for camp screenings in Norfolk or Richmond has been completed.

EXCLUSION CRITERIA:

-Children with a medical diagnosis other than cancer or their related disorders.


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Citations:

The child behavior profile: II boys aged 12-16 and girls aged 6-11 and 12-16

Children's symptom and social functioning self-report scales: Comparison of mothers' and children's reports

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Contacts:

Principal Investigator

Referral Contact

For more information:

Stephen J. Chanock, M.D.
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
BG 9609 RM 7E412
9609 MEDICAL CENTER DR
ROCKVILLE MD 20850
(240) 276-7150
chanocks@mail.nih.gov

Tammara Jenkins, R.N.
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
National Institutes of Health
Room 2A03
6100 Executive Boulevard
Rockville, Maryland 20852
(301) 435-6807
tjenkins@mail.nih.gov

NCI Referral Office
National Institute of Health Clinical Center (CC), 9000 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, United States: NCI Clinical Trials Referral Office
1-888-NCI-1937

Clinical Trials Number:

NCT00001186

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