The childhood, adolescent and young adult solid tumor program at the Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital at Westchester Medical Center and New York Medical College consists of a multidisciplinary team focused on the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancers arising in solid organs outside of the cerebrospinal system. The program is also focused on the education of students, residents and fellows who will be conducting scholarly and peer reviewed clinical, translational and basic research in solid tumors. Furthermore, the Solid Tumor Program has several “state of the art” basic science, translational and clinical research programs in neuroblastoma, kidney, liver, bone, soft tissue and germ cell tumors. Overall, the program is equipped to design and deliver customized and personalized therapy for each child and adolescent diagnosed with a solid tumor.
The program is focused in all aspects of solid tumors occurring in children, adolescents and young adults including neuroblastoma, kidney tumors such as Wilms’ tumor, liver tumors such as hepatoblastoma and hepatocellular carcinoma, bone tumors such as Ewing’s sarcoma and osteosarcoma, soft tissue tumors such as rhabdomyosarcoma, germ cell tumors such as ovarian and testicular tumors.
The Pediatric Solid Tumor Service collaborates with the Division of Gynecologic Oncology and Robotic Gynecologic Surgery for those children and young adults who may present with gynecologic cancers. The Gynecologic Oncology Division is the Comprehensive Academic Oncologic Gynecology Service for the Hudson Valley Region of New York State, and serves as a major referral center for regions between Albany and the New York City line. In addition to four Gynecologic Oncologists, specialty services within the Division include Gynecologic Pathology, Radiology, Radiation Therapy, an Infusion Unit, and advanced surgical services including robotics and other minimally invasive and fertility sparing surgery. Patient treatment decisions are made through the Tumor Board that includes multiple members of the Division’s Gynecologic Oncology team in collaboration with other specialist such as radiation oncologists, medical oncologist and pediatric oncologists.
Solid tumors in children can arise from nearly any organ. While the mainstay of treatment remains chemotherapy, curing children of these tumors may necessitate complex therapy involving different specialties.
- Liver tumors [Our Clinical Trials, Patient Information] In select cases in addition to chemotherapy, to cure a patient with hepatoblastoma or hepatocellular carcinoma a liver transplant may be necessary. We work closely with the pediatric liver transplant program at MFCH to identify the best surgical approach for each child. Each case is discussed by a tumor board comprising of pediatric oncologists, hepatologist, pediatric surgeon, liver transplant surgeon, radiologists, radiotherapist and pathologist to determine the best tailored therapy.
- Kidney tumors [Our Clinical Trials, Patient Information] The successful treatment of children with Wilms’ tumor or renal cell carcinoma requires more than simply removing the tumor – kidney function must be maintained. The urologists at MFCH have extensive experience with nephron sparing surgery, which preserves the most normal kidney tissue possible. The appropriate therapy is discussed by a tumor board comprising pediatric oncologists, urologists, radiologists, radiotherapist and pathologist to determine the best therapy for each patient.
- Sarcomas [Our Clinical Trials, Patient Information] Musculoskeletal tumors, including osteosarcoma, Ewing sarcoma, and rhabdomyosarcoma can have profound effects on children’s quality of life, as these tumors frequently involve the arms and legs. Together with our orthopaedic surgeons and radiation oncologists, we can use innovative treatment strategies including limb sparing surgery and radiation therapy (including brachytherapy) to preserve limb function while curing children from their cancers.
- Germ cell tumors [Our Clinical Trials, Patient Information] Tumors arising from the ovaries and testes require a nuanced approach to treatment. Some tumors are cured by a combination of surgery and chemotherapy, while for others, surgery alone will suffice. The appropriate therapy is discussed by a tumor board comprising pediatric oncologists, urologists, adolescent gynecologists, radiologists and pathologists to determine the best therapy for each patient.
- Neuroblastoma [Our Clinical Trials, Patient Information] Neuroblastoma can develop in a variety of places in the body, including the neck, chest, spine, and adrenal glands. Multimodal therapy including chemotherapy, surgery, radiation therapy, immunotherapy and stem cell transplantation may be used, especially in the setting of advanced disease. MFCH has state of the art stem cell transplantation capabilities including a cellular and tissue engineering laboratory and our physicians have been pioneers in the field.