New treatment guidelines for the clinical management of hematologic malignancies in pregnant women have been published November 30 online ahead of print in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

The guidelines, developed by an international group of experts, include information on diagnostics, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, perinatal care, maternal care, and pediatric care.

During pregnancy, the incidence of hematologic malignancies is 0.02%, a figure that continues to increase as more women become pregnant at later ages. Symptoms of hematologic malignancies can sometimes mimic the physiologic changes that occur during pregnancy. Because early treatment is crucial to favorable outcomes, it is recommended that clinicians use “a high index of suspicion.”

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“This consensus summary equips healthcare professionals with novel diagnostic and treatment methodologies that aim for optimal treatment of the mother, while protecting fetal and pediatric health,” the authors wrote.