“I’ve always wanted to become a doctor. I’m an oncologist – the head of oncology here at CHEO. I look after patients with cancer. The biggest areas that I work in are: patients with brain tumors, patients with the type of Leukemia called AML, and patients with neuroblastoma. We’re always on the cutting edge of treatments. It’s not like we’re treating something the way we treated it 30 years ago, as soon as something is discovered, we treat it that way. But telling a parent that their child has cancer, it’s a stressful conversation to have with them – you always have a pit in your stomach before going to meet with a family. But when you go in, you tell them that their child has cancer but you also tell them that this is the plan. You have cancer but this is what we’re going to do about it. What’s harder is when you know them very well afterwards; you tell them that they have cancer and that the cancer has come back and that the plan is not as positive as it was, that’s the hardest part. But you know, you’re there to help support a family. We’re very fortunate, we have a lot of resources here. There’s two things that I hope for the future. One is that, nobody dies of cancer. We’ve come so far – we’re now up to 82 to 84 percent cure rate for kids with cancer, so there’s still room to improve. And the other is with the kids that are cured, many of them are left with side effects from the treatment we gave them. It’s not a benign therapy. It’s a really hard treatment, with lots of side effects. So to diminish that, those are the two big things – to cure cancer but not at a big cost.”

HUMANS OF OTTAWA 

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