Lisa Giordano, MD – Rush University Medical Center

I take care of infants, children, adolescents
and even young adults with both cancer and diseases of the blood. Some of these blood disorders we can cure
relatively quickly, others are lifelong genetic disorders. So we work closely with the family to try
to come up with the best long-term management program for that family, so that we can all
together help the child live as normal a life as possible. Many of the cancers that we see in children
are quite different from the cancers that are seen in adults. In my career — over the past 25 years or
so — I’ve seen some tremendous advances in the medical science of treating pediatric
malignancy. And I see that children overall are doing
much better today than they were when I started in the field — not only because we can cure
more patients of their malignancy, but also because supportive care has actually significantly
improved. And so some of therapies that we administer
are quite toxic, and in order to get the patient through the therapy, we really need to provide
good supportive care to reduce those short and long-term toxicities. And I think in my field we’ve come quite
a long way in improving the standard of care for both treatment of malignancy as well as
supportive care.

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