Transplant patients have a higher risk of developing skin cancer. The transplant immunosuppression medications that allow your child’s kidney to work and survive also increase the risk of skin cancer. It is very important that children with kidney transplants and their families know about how to protect themselves from the sun. This should be done both before and after the transplant. Children with moles or unusual moles should be checked by a dermatologist before transplant and followed closely after transplant.
Prevention of skin cancer means daily use of a sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or more. Clothing with long sleeves and a tight fabric weave should be worn outdoors, as well as broad-brimmed hat. Stay out of the direct sun between 10 a.m and 2 p.m as much as possible. Tanning beds should not be used.
Transplant patients could have problems with warts. Warts are caused by a virus (HPV). They may have more and larger warts that last longer and are harder to treat. Transplants medications may make it harder for your child to fight off the virus that causes warts. If your child has too many large or painful warts before transplant, he or she should be checked by a dermatologist who has experience dealing with warts in children. We do not have medicine to prevent warts but there is a vaccine to prevent genital warts. Genital warts can cause cancer in both men and women and transplant patients have a higher risk of cancer than people who have never had a transplant. This vaccine is available and recommended for both boys and girls; since it works best before people become sexually active it can be given starting as young as 9 years of age.