TUESDAY, Feb. 21, 2023 (HealthDay News) — For children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), but not those with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), living along the Texas-Mexico border is associated with inferior survival, according to a study published online Feb. 21 in Cancer.

Maria I. Castellanos, M.D., from Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, and colleagues examined the impact of border residence on survival among children with ALL and AML, living near the Texas-Mexico border at the time of diagnosis. Patients aged 0 to 19 years who were diagnosed with ALL and AML between 1995 and 2017 were included in the study (6,002 and 1,279 children, respectively).

The researchers found that compared with those living in nonborder areas, children with ALL living along the border region had inferior five-year overall survival (77.5 versus 85.8 percent). In adjusted models, the risk for death was 30 percent higher for children with ALL living along the border versus those living in nonborder areas. In contrast, there was no variation seen in survival estimates by border versus nonborder residence for children with AML.

“We observed marked survival disparities among children with leukemia residing along the Texas-Mexico border region,” the authors write. “The impact of geographic location, in particular the U.S.-Mexico border region, highlights the importance of identifying at‐risk geographic regions of the country.”

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