We recognize that a diagnosis of cancer can be just as overwhelming, frightening, and upsetting for the entire family as it is for your child. We’ve cared for hundreds of children with neuroblastoma, and it’s our goal to help you in every way we can, whether it’s with medical treatments, social or emotional support, or even by offering activities that allow your child to laugh, dance, and play.
In addition to our expertise in handling medical symptoms and possible side effects from treatment, our extensive network of other patients and families who’ve had similar experiences can serve as resources for you and your family.
Our support programs are designed to help your child and your family cope with a range of issues related to life during and after treatment for neuroblastoma.
Pediatric Psychosocial Support Team
Cancer can affect children in many ways. Our pediatric psychosocial care team offers support to you, your child, and other family members as you deal with a cancer diagnosis.
This team includes:
- social workers
- child life specialists
- managers and support staff
- physical and occupational therapists
- integrative medicine specialists
- patient service coordinators
- patient representatives
In addition to other MSK experts, we also enlist the support of outside agencies, programs, and organizations to support our patients.
Our Department of Pediatrics makes our school program a high priority. As one of 40 hospitals participating in a New York City Department of Education program called Hospital Schools, we have several full-time teachers who play an active role in educating our pediatric patients.
Employed by the New York City Board of Education, our teachers help children and teens undergoing cancer treatment keep up with their studies and prepare for exams. We work closely with each child’s school and/or home instructor to enable him or her to return to class after treatment with little or no loss of educational standing, and to prepare for required tests, including New York State Regents exams, SATs, and GEDs.
Child Life Services
Child life specialists are trained professionals who are experts in human growth and development and have a variety of backgrounds and interests, including education, psychology, fine arts, and art therapy.
We combine our skills and certifications to create comprehensive child life services that educate and empower you, your child, and other family members throughout an illness. The goal of our Child Life Program is to help young patients and their families develop strategies for coping with and adjusting to treatment.
Our recreational programming gives our youngest patients the chance to participate in many of the usual activities that children, adolescents, and young adults enjoy. Under the direction of child life specialists, we offer a range of age-appropriate activities daily in the Pediatric Day Hospital and the Inpatient Unit. These are designed to provide our patients and their siblings with social environments and supportive ways to spend time in the hospital.
Physical and Occupational Therapy
As your child recovers from treatment for neuroblastoma, he or she may need rehabilitation therapy. Our specially trained staff offers both outpatient and inpatient physical and occupational therapy.
Your child or young adult is free to access therapies offered by our Integrative Medicine Service, which include such programs as music therapy, mind/body therapies, dance and movement therapy, yoga, and other services. These therapies complement mainstream medical care by addressing the physical and emotional symptoms associated with cancer and its treatment. Outpatients and inpatients can take part in groups or at the bedside.
A healthy diet after cancer treatment can help your child feel better overall. Although there’s no evidence that specific foods will prevent cancer from returning, eating the right foods can help reduce the risk for other diseases and improve general health. We offer consultations on how to eat best during and after treatment for outpatients and inpatients.