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Change the Course: Advanced Options for Your High-Risk Patients

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Together We Advance

Families and physicians benefit from a combination of cutting-edge research and therapies, combined with excellent clinical care.

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This video series is designed to help referring oncologists and families better understand the different treatment options for patients with difficult or hard to treat cancers. As one of the largest pediatric cancer programs in the country, the Cancer Center at CHOP has dedicated teams of specialists, with focused experience on a certain type of cancer, and often times can offer patients access to certain therapies and protocols, that can’t be found elsewhere. The Center works with oncologists and families from all over the world to integrate some of these therapies into their existing treatment programs at home, to create a stronger treatment plan that works for the families.

Transcript: Together We Advance

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Erin Chance, Mother of Patrick: Probably the resources I find most useful at CHOP are the fact that there are cutting-edge, Phase 1 chemotherapies trial here that you cannot get anywhere else. If you want this medicine for your child, it's at CHOP. So the fact that they make it easy to get here, easy to deal with the doctors and nurses, easy to have a relationship with between your home hospital and the hospital here, is great because if you want the hope of the newest, best medicines, then this is the place to be.

Thomas W. McLean, MD: I would say the best thing about working with CHOP and the physicians at CHOP is knowing that they have the ideal blend of cutting-edge research but excellent clinical care.

Rochelle Bagatell, MD: Many of our physicians are heavily involved in the development of the clinical trials that are available nationwide. And so those physicians and the colleagues who work with them benefit from their own experience, but also the experience of other centers who have patients enrolled on the study. So if a physician has been involved in the development and conduct of a study, they will have thought about and grappled with a wide array of complications that can arise, extenuating circumstances that may have come up, and they'll have an appreciation for how things can be handled both when things are going smoothly and when it's more difficult.

Frank M. Balis, MD: Over many years we've studied and learned about the pathogenesis, the causes of different types of cancer in children and adults, and now that research is just bearing fruits in terms of identifying drugs that are much more selective and specific for the cancers and hopefully much less toxic to the patients. And there are a number of other relatively rare diseases that we didn't have many studies for or good treatments for that have benefited directly from an understanding in the laboratory and translating that directly into the clinic.

John M. Maris, MD: If a discovery is made and there's a new treatment, we have the resources to get that implemented quickly. We strive very, very hard to have many of these new discoveries arise here. So in many respects the families that are here will get first shot at something that is new or very interesting for the care of a particular disease.

Anne Reilly, MD: Here at CHOP we're one of the first places that a proton program was conceived and built with children in mind, and built side by side with our oncology program there to support it. So that a child that comes here to get proton therapy has the advantage of the CHOP oncology program there to support the child in their chemotherapy, and all their other medical needs while they're getting their proton therapy.

John M. Maris, MD: Research to us is not enrolling children onto a clinical trial. Research to us is the process of using the most recent advances to impact in a positive manner the lives of children living with cancer today.

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