I am responsible for caring for patients with retinoblastoma (a malignant tumor of the retina) and am in charge of The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia retinoblastoma clinical trials. I succeed the preeminent Dr. Anna Meadows in this position, having been fortunate to be trained by her for the last 20 years.
Retinoblastoma was one of the last childhood cancer frontiers to be conquered. Previously, therapy involved radiation therapy and often surgical removal of the eye (enucleation). Children’s Hospital was among the first to pioneer systemic chemotherapy for these patients, and we partner with the renowned ophthalmologist Dr. Carol Shields at Wills Eye Institute.
Now systemic chemotherapy, used with local ophthalmic therapy, can eliminate the need for radiation therapy and/or enucleation in many patients. Historically, approximately 10 percent of children with the genetic form of the disease developed a deadly tumor called pineoblastoma. With systemic chemotherapy, we are preventing the majority of these tumors from developing.
Children's Hospital has the only certified laboratory in the U.S. to provide genetic testing for retinoblastoma. Our Cancer Predisposition Program, run by my colleague Dr. Garrett Brodeur, provides detailed genetic counseling. We also work closely with scientists here at the University of Pennsylvania in conducting groundbreaking research into the possible causes of retinoblastoma.
I believe in hands on, patient- and family-centered care. I am in constant contact with my patients’ local pediatricians and oncologists since our patients come from all over the U.S. Our goal is to increase the number of children with retinoblastoma who can be cured and who can retain vision. Our expert clinical team and research efforts are all focused on that goal.
Education and Training
Dartmouth-Brown Program in Medicine (MD), Providence, RI
Pediatrics, The Mount Sinai Hospital, New York, NY
Pediatrics, The Mount Sinai Hospital, New York, NY
Hematology/Oncology, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, PA
Bone Marrow Transplantation, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center, Seattle, WA
American Board of PediatricsAmerican Board of Pediatrics/Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Dartmouth College (BA, English), Providence, RI
Titles and Academic Titles
Clinical professor of Pediatrics, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
Departments and Services
DiDomenico C, Clerico D, Leahey A: Lack of vincristine infiltrates in patients with retinoblastoma receiving chemotherapy by peripheral intravenous lines. Pediatric Blood and Cancer Apr 2015 Notes: Epub ahead of print.
Shields CL, Kaliki S, Al-Dahmash S, Rojanaporn D, Leahey A, Griffin G, Jabbour P, Shields JA: Management of advanced retinoblastoma with intravenous chemotherapy then intra-arterial chemotherapy as alternative to enucleation. Retina 33(10): 2103-9, Nov-Dec 2013.
Ramasubramanian A, Kytasty C, Meadows AT, Shields JA, Leahey A, Shields CL: Incidence of pineal gland cyst and pineoblastoma in children with retinoblastoma during the chemoreduction era. American Journal of Ophthalmology 156(4): 825-9, Oct 2013.
Leahey A. Mediastinal mass. In: Schwartz MW, editor. Clinical handbook of pediatrics. Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins; 2002.
Leahey A. Mediastinal mass. In: Schwartz MW, editor. Clinical handbook of pediatrics. Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins; 1999.
Leahey A. Graft versus host disease. In: Schwartz MW, editor. The 5 minute pediatric consult. Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins; 1997. p. 3576-57.
Leahey A. Bone marrow transplantation. In: Schwartz MW, editor. The 5 minute pediatric consult. Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins; 1997. p. 158-9.
Leahey A. Acute lymphoblastic leukemia. In: Sinniah D, D'Angio G, editors. Atlas of Pediatric Oncology. London: Arnold; 1995. p. 10-18.
Leahey A. Chronic myeloid leukemia and myelodysplasia. In: Sinniah D, D'Angio G, editors. Atlas of Pediatric Oncology. London: Arnold; 1995. p. 26-30.
Leahey A. Acute myeloid leukemia. In: Sinniah D, D'Angio G, editors. Atlas of Pediatric Oncology. London: Arnold; 1995. p. 19-25.
Leahey A. Mediastinal mass. In: Schwartz MW, editor. Clinical handbook of pediatrics. Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins; 1995.
Editorial and Academic Positions
2006-present, Reviewer, Pediatric Blood and Cancer
1995-present, Associate Editor, Atlas of Pediatric Oncology
2000-present, Pediatric Oncology Protocol Review Committee
Patient Experience Ratings
About the Patient Experience Rating System
The Patient Experience Rating is an average of all responses to the care provider related questions shown above from our nationally-recognized Press Ganey Patient Satisfaction Survey. Patients that are treated in outpatient or hospital environments may receive different surveys, and the volume of responses will vary by question.
Responses are measured on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the best score.
We are committed to true transparency. However, to ensure the comments are fair and correctly attributed, we review each one before posting to the website. We exclude entire comments that disclose patient's protected health information, are off-topic, or include other confidential or inappropriate content. Comments will appear on provider bios only if providers have a minimum number of comments.
Comments are shared internally for education purposes to ensure that we are doing our very best for the patients and families for whom we are privileged to care.
The comments are submitted by patients and families and reflect their views and opinions. The comments are not endorsed by and do not reflect the views of Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.