Researchers are working to improve their understanding of long-term and late effects and to create guidelines for follow-up care. They're also trying to identify biomarkers — high levels of certain substances like antibodies and hormones — that may increase susceptibility to certain effects. By identifying biomarkers, researchers can develop tests to predict the effects a patient may be at risk for and then plan treatment accordingly.
What's more, experts are studying how to better understand and treat long-term and late effects in clinical trials. In addition to studying ways to lessen negative impacts of existing therapies, they're seeking to understand how factors like aging and social and economic status influence long-term and late effects. LLS is currently funding an initiative at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia to discover and eliminate the causes of cancer treatment's late effects.