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Social Media and the Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) Patient with Cancer

  • Social Media Impact of Hematologic Malignancies (N Pemmaraju, Section Editor)
  • Published:
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Over 70,000 adolescent and young adults (AYA) aged 15 to 39 years are diagnosed with cancer each year in the US. The National Cancer Institute (NCI) has identified AYA cancer patients as a unique population. The most common cancers in this age group include tumors typically seen in pediatric patients such as acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and brain tumors, as well as cancers more typically seen in adult patients such as breast cancer and melanoma. In addition, some cancers have their highest incidence in AYA patients, such as Hodgkin Lymphoma, testicular cancer, and bone tumors. AYA patients face additional unique issues due to their age, not just questions about treatment choices due to lack of data but also questions about fertility, relationships, loss of autonomy, and interruptions in school/work with potentially significant financial complications. This age group also has very high rates of social media usage with up to 90 % of adults aged 18 to 29 using social networking sites. In this review, we will describe the use of social media in AYAs with cancer and highlight some of the online resources for AYAs.

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Correspondence to Miguel-Angel Perales.

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Conflict of Interest

Miguel-Angel Perales and William A. Wood each declare no potential conflicts of interest.

Emily K. Drake is a consultant for Hope & Cope.

Naveen Pemmaraju is a consultant and received honoraria from Stemline, Novartis, LFB, Roche-Diagnostics, and Incyte. Dr. Pemmaraju is a section editor for Current Hematologic Malignancy Reports.

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This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

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This article is part of the Topical Collection on Social Media Impact of Hematologic Malignancies

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Perales, MA., Drake, E.K., Pemmaraju, N. et al. Social Media and the Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) Patient with Cancer. Curr Hematol Malig Rep 11, 449–455 (2016).

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