Therapeutic radiation and the potential risk of second malignancies

Sophia C. Kamran, Amy Berrington De Gonzalez, Andrea Ng, Daphne Haas-Kogan, Akila N. Viswanathan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Radiation has long been associated with carcinogenesis. Nevertheless, it is an important part of multimodality therapy for many malignancies. It is critical to assess the risk of secondary malignant neoplasms (SMNs) after radiation treatment. The authors reviewed the literature with a focus on radiation and associated SMNs for primary hematologic, breast, gynecologic, and pediatric tumors. Radiation appeared to increase the risk of SMN in all of these; however, this risk was found to be associated with age, hormonal influences, chemotherapy use, environmental influences, genetic predisposition, infection, and immunosuppression. The risk also appears to be altered with modern radiotherapy techniques. Practitioners of all specialties who treat cancer survivors in follow-up should be aware of this potential risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1809-1821
Number of pages13
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 15 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • carcinogenesis
  • neoplasm
  • radiotherapy
  • risk
  • second primary
  • survivors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Therapeutic radiation and the potential risk of second malignancies'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this