While many teenaged girls might balk at wearing a medical device on their shaved heads 18 hours a day, Abbey Schemmer didn’t blink an eye. After all, the 16-year-old CHOC Children’s patient was fighting for her life. Following the diagnosis of two brain tumors – including a rare, extremely aggressive type called glioblastoma multiforme –
CHOC Children’s is taking the concepts of second-opinion consultation and tumor board planning at least six steps further. The Virtual Pediatric Network (VPN) uses state-of-the-art video conferencing to allow pediatric cancer experts from six leading institutions to share best practices, research and expertise as if they were all in the same room. “No one institution
The teen years are a time when adolescents develop their self-image, seek autonomy or independence from their parents, and deal with issues of emerging sexuality, Dr. Sender says. Keeping that in mind with young cancer patients, he explains, “We try to understand and not downplay the issues of self-esteem and body image. We make sure we are talking to the patients and not just their parents.
When treating children and teens with cancer at CHOC, physicians also have another health aspect in mind: patients’ future fertility. Because so many adolescent cancer patients are surviving into adulthood, physicians, patients and their families have a major interest in preserving a patient’s fertility, as well as the long-term effects that treatment can have on
I’m more than half way through my 50-week CHOC gratitude tour, and I just met two others who want to join me in thanking the hospital for our bright futures: Meet Amy and Emily. Sisters Amy and Emily believe they have two birthdays: the days they were born, and the days they were diagnosed with
Much has changed in oncology the last 50 years. In the 1960s, childhood cancer survival rates were less than 20 percent. Today, survival rates near 80 percent, according to the National Cancer Institute. Isn’t that astounding? It’s been amazing to watch the changes in cancer diagnosis, treatment and knowledge since the time I first visited
There’s never a good time for a cancer diagnosis, but the teen and young adult years can be an especially tough time for cancer patients. Adolescents and young adults into their 30s who are being treated for cancer face a wide range of issues special to their age group that need to be considered to