Children and young people’s cancer

Cancer services for children and young people (CYP) are for patients from birth to 24 years inclusive.

Children’s cancer services are used by children aged between 0 and 16.

Services for teenagers and young adults (TYA) are for patients from the age of 16 until their 25th birthday.

Children’s cancer is much less common than adult cancer. Children develop different types of cancers than adults but they often have the same types of treatments.

In the UK around 1,900 children (aged 0 – 14 years) are diagnosed with cancer each year (figure from Cancer Research UK). This number includes brain tumours that are non-cancerous (benign).

Cancer is caused by cells in your body not behaving as they should. Although cancer in young people is rare, if anything seems weird it’s always best to check. If you are worried that you might have cancer, contact your GP surgery directly.

Treating Children and Young People’s Cancer in Wessex


In Wessex we have a dedicated Children’s cancer unit in Southampton, with strong links to doctors and nurses in other hospitals across the region. This allows children to receive some of their treatment and care closer to home.

Teenage Cancer Trust offer care and support for every young person facing cancer. Follow the links below to their website to find out more.

Our Cancer, Our Way


Across Wessex we have been working on a feedback and improvement project for children and young people’s cancer. We’ve called this work “Our Cancer Our Way”.

Click on the banner below to read more on the Wessex Cancer Alliance website. There are videos and blogs, and you can find out how to get involved.

Here are some links to more organisations who support children and young people with cancer.

Abby’s Heroes

The aim of our charity is to help and support children and their families, including bereaved families, who come under the care of the Piam Brown and the Teenagers and Young Adults (TYA) wards at Southampton General Hospital. We offer financial and practical help as well as the opportunity to make lasting memories for the children and their families.

Amelia’s Rainbow

Amelia’s Rainbow supports children in Dorset and the surrounding area who are suffering from any terminal, life-limiting, serious and chronic illnesses. We aim to create an environment full of fun, laughter, achievement and memories.

Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Group

We are a leading children’s cancer charity and the UK and Ireland’s professional association for those involved in the treatment and care of children with cancer.

Leukaemia Educating and Fundraising – LEAF

LEAF supports blood cancer patients and their families in Dorset and Hampshire.

Little Princess Trust

We provide real hair wigs, free of charge, to children and young people who have lost their own hair through cancer treatment and other conditions.

Young Lives vs Cancer

We help families find the strength to face everything cancer throws at them.

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