Myanmar Nutrition Webinar​

Written by Louis Gregory
World Child Cancer is actively extending its support to healthcare providers in Myanmar by conducting a series of webinars in the latter part of May and early June. With two webinar sessions focusing on essential aspects of paediatric cancer care, the aim is to empower healthcare professionals and enhance their understanding of critical topics.

Led by the Senior Clinical Nutrition Specialist of Boston Children’s Hospital, Erin Gordon, the webinars aimed to educate doctors, nurses, and medical students from Yangon Children’s Hospital (YCH) and Mandalay Children’s Hospital (MCH) in Myanmar. A total of 25  participants joined the sessions including nurses, doctors, and postgraduate medical students.

The first session delved into the crucial topic of nutrition for patients with mucositis. Mucositis, a complication of some cancer therapies in which the lining of the digestive system becomes inflamed, is a condition experienced by over 50% of childhood cancer patients that restricts the ability to eat and drink. As such, the risk of malnutrition is increased; thereby worsening responses to treatment, lengthening hospital stays, increasing abandonment rates and the risk of postoperative complications and ultimately decreasing survival rates. The webinar discussed preventative strategies to reduce the severity of mucositis, including the introduction of soft and nutrient-dense diets, oral supplements, nasogastric tubes (NGTs), and ready-to-use therapeutic foods (RUTFs).

The second session discussed the Neutropenic Diet which has been the dominant dietary recommendation for patients with neutropenia. For neutropenic patients with a reduced number of white blood cells, a limited ‘low bacteria’ diet has been recommended since the 1960s, although there is no scientific consensus as to its benefits. Rather than limiting the dietary choices of patients, as is recommended in the Neutropenic Diet, the webinar stressed the importance of a varied, high-quality diet and the health benefits of prebiotics and probiotics during and after treatment.

Such knowledge is vital in safeguarding patients from potential complications and optimising their treatment outcomes. The knowledge we share about childhood cancer determines how we tackle it. By circulating evidence-based practices and tackling critical topics, such webinars empower doctors, nurses, and medical students and enhance their capacity to provide improved care to young cancer patients, both in Myanmar and throughout resource-scarce nations globally.

“We’ve observed that more than half of the newly diagnosed childhood cancer patients in YCH are malnourished. Malnourishment is a major contributing factor for the complications of treatment of childhood cancer. Therefore, supportive management including nutrition build up is critical for the children with cancer. Enteral nutrition support is the only option in Myanmar where total parental nutrition is not feasible. Hence understanding of appropriate nutritious supplementation in children based on local context is very important. These 2 webinars covered and highlighted this information to first line care providers of childhood cancer in Myanmar.(YCH+MCH). The information provided is useful in day to day practice.(Thanks to Erin Gordon and World Child Cancer)

– Dr. Aye Aye Khaing; Paediatric Oncologist at Yangon Children’s Hospital, Myanmar  and the Medical Lead of World  Child  Cancer Myanmar.  

Uttam’s Story

Meet Uttam – just one of the 662 children as part of our ‘Closing the Cancer Gap’ appeal, including matched funding from the UK Government. 

Read more

Alile’s Story

Discover Alile’s journey through cancer as recounted by her mother, from the initial symptoms to diagnosis and treatment.

Read more

Naa’s Story

We first met Naa in 2016 when she was diagnosed with Wilm’s Tumour at 7 years old. In 2021 the cancer returned and Naa underwent treatment again. She has battled cancer twice and is now back in school.

Read more

Joseph’s update

We first met Joseph in 2019 after he was diagnosed with Leukaemia. Find out more how he is doing after his successful treatment.

Read more

Kayin’s story

Kayin was diagnosed with Burkitt’s Lymphoma. He is now working as a carpenter and is feeling happy and strong.

Read more

Rebecca’s Update

Read more about our catch-up with Rebecca after undergoing cancer treatment through World Child Cancer in Ghana six years ago.

Read more

Discover More Stories…

Uttam’s Story

Meet Uttam – just one of the 662 children as part of our ‘Closing the Cancer Gap’ appeal, including matched funding from the UK Government. 

Read more

Alile’s Story

Discover Alile’s journey through cancer as recounted by her mother, from the initial symptoms to diagnosis and treatment.

Read more

Naa’s Story

We first met Naa in 2016 when she was diagnosed with Wilm’s Tumour at 7 years old. In 2021 the cancer returned and Naa underwent treatment again. She has battled cancer twice and is now back in school.

Read more

Joseph’s update

We first met Joseph in 2019 after he was diagnosed with Leukaemia. Find out more how he is doing after his successful treatment.

Read more

Kayin’s story

Kayin was diagnosed with Burkitt’s Lymphoma. He is now working as a carpenter and is feeling happy and strong.

Read more

Rebecca’s Update

Read more about our catch-up with Rebecca after undergoing cancer treatment through World Child Cancer in Ghana six years ago.

Read more

Hassan’s story

14-year-old Hassan from the Machinga district of Malawi was diagnosed with Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) last year.

Read more

Tiwo’s story

Five years after developing cancer and two years of treatment later, six-year-old Tiwo is doing well

Read more

Franklyn’s Story

Meet Franklyn, now 17, who is fully recovered from cancer and dreams of becoming a doctor to help others

Read more

Rebecca’s Success Story

Rebecca is now able to return to school after undergoing cancer treatment through World Child Cancer in Ghana

Read more

My road to recovery

Prince went on to become a childhood cancer advocate and help many other children just like him when he recovered from leukaemia. Read More

Read more

Estaphanie is excited to start university!

Meet Estaphanie, who is excited to start university after being forced to take time out of school following a cancer diagnosis

Read more

Meet Bulu

Bulu is looking forward to following in his brother’s footsteps getting back on the football field

Read more

Meet Oscar

Oscar was six years old when his mother noticed a swelling on his tummy and took him to a traditional village doctor

Read more
Will you join us?

Together we can close the gap in childhood cancer care.

Fill out the form to download the taster session


    Fill out the form to download the taster session


      Fill out the form to download the taster session


        Fill out the form to download the taster session


          Fill out the form to download the taster session


            Fill out the form to download the taster session


              Fill out the form to download the taster session


                Fill out the form to download the taster session


                  Fill out the form to download the taster session