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Neuroblastoma

Neuroblastoma is a cancer that often begins in childhood. It impacts the nerve tissue, especially in the adrenal glands.

Doctors + Care Team

Carl B. Heilman, MD

Carl B. Heilman, MD

Title(s): Neurosurgeon-in-Chief; Chairman of Neurosurgery; Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Neurosurgery
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5860
Fax #: 617-636-7587

Meningiomas, acoustic neuromas, skull base surgery, pituitary surgery, Chiari surgery

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Jason Law, MD

Jason Law, MD

Title(s): Director of Bone Marrow Transplantation; Assistant Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Pediatrics, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5535
Fax #: 617-636-7738

Pediatric hematology, oncology, bone marrow transplant

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Michael Kelly, MD

Michael Kelly, MD

Title(s): Pediatric Hematologist/Oncologist; Principal Investigator, Childrens Oncology Group; Clinical Associate Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Pediatrics, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5535
Fax #: 617-636-7738

Childhood cancers including leukemia, lymphoma and solid tumors, anemia and bleeding disorders, thrombosis

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Susan K. Parsons, MD, MRP

Susan K. Parsons, MD, MRP

Title(s): Founding Director, Reid R. Sacco Adolescent and Young Adult Program for Cancer and Hereditary Blood Diseases; Director, The Center for Health Solutions at the Institute for Clinical Research and Health Policy Studies; Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Pediatrics, Cancer Center, Medicine, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, Hematology/Oncology
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5168
Fax #: 617-636-6280

Pediatric bone marrow transplantation, long-term quality of life following transplantation, supportive medical and emotional care for patients and families

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Research + Clinical Trials


A Phase II Trial of Nifurtimox for Refractory or Relapsed Neuroblastoma or Medulloblastoma

This study is being done to test the effect of a drug, nifurtimox, against neuroblastoma and medulloblastoma in children. Nifurtimox is a drug that has been used in South America for many years to treat a parasitic disease known as Chagas Disease. It is not approved by the Food and Drug Administration for routine use in neuroblastoma or medulloblastoma in the United States, but the FDA is allowing it to be used in research studies like this one. Limited early observations, suggest that nifurtimox may have anti-tumor activity for neuroblastoma and medulloblastoma. We do not know whether nifurtimox will shrink/kill tumor cells effectively in children. Therefore, the major goal of the study is to learn if nifurtimox in combination with other common chemotherapy drugs is effective in shrinking/killing neuroblastoma and medulloblastoma cells. We will also be collecting information about any side effects that the drug may have.
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ANBL1232: Utilizing Response and Biology-Based Risk Factors to Guide Therapy in Patients with Non-High-Risk Neuroblastoma: A Groupwide Historically Controlled Phase III Study

In this study we are using new biologic features, in addition to the standard risk factors, to help decide which subjects need treatment and what the best treatment is. People with non-high-risk NBL generally respond well to treatment and the majority of patients can be treated successfully with standard therapy. But standard therapy can include risks from surgery and/or side effects from chemotherapy.Based on the evaluation of non-high-risk NBL patients treated in the past, we think that we can change the amount of therapy for subjects and still treat the cancer successfully. Small studies have shown that some subjects can be watched without having surgery or getting chemotherapy and still have an excellent outcome. By not having surgery or lowering the amount of chemotherapy we hope to prevent complications and harmful side effects. For other subjects we think a change in therapy will treat the cancer more successfully.
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NMTT: Neuroblastoma Maintenance Therapy Trial Using Difluoromethylornithine (DFMO)

The purpose of this research study is to evaluate an investigational drug (DFMO) for Neuroblastoma that is in remission. Remission means that there are no current signs of active cancer. An investigational drug is one that has not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This study will look at the ability of this study drug to keep neuroblastoma in remission and will also look at the safety and tolerability of DFMO.
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Tufts Medical Center and Floating Hospital for Children have high quality care.

Quality + Safety

A world-class pediatric teaching hospital shouldn’t make you and your child feel small.  At Floating Hospital for Children our littlest patients are our biggest priority. This means we’re committed to providing the highest quality of care in a safe, friendly environment.

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A child in the pediatric emergency department at Floating Hospital for Children.

Floating Ranks With the Best

The Leapfrog Group gave Floating Hospital for Children and Tufts Medical Center an “A” rating for outstanding patient safety in 2014.

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Floating Hospital for Children has a strong history of innovation.

A Fresh Breath of Air

Floating Hospital for Children began its life as a hospital ship in the Boston Harbor in 1894 before coming onshore permanently in 1931.

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