Presentation Description: Advances in the treatment of pediatric cancer have resulted in significant improvements in cure rates and presently over 80% of children with cancer will be cured of their disease. Unfortunately, this improvement has come at a significant cost as a large proportion of children are left with significant late effects that cause significant life-long morbidity and even mortality. Therefore, a recent focus of research in pediatric oncology has been to investigate outcomes in long term survivors, in order to try and eliminate these late effects. The recent advances in genomic technology have allowed researchers to begin to try to unravel the causes of treatment toxicity, and to answer the question of why one child has a devastating complication of therapy, while a similar child receiving the same treatment does not have any toxicity. This presentation highlighted many of the recent advances in the understanding of drug toxicity in pediatric cancer, and specifically looked at three late effects: cisplatin-induced hearing loss, cardiac toxicity due to anthracyclines, and radiation and chemotherapy induced second malignancies.
Rod Rassekh, MD, MHSc
Clinical Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia Vancouver, BC
Pediatric Oncologist, BC Children’s Hospital, Vancouver, BC