Promising High-Dose Radiation Therapy For Neuroblastoma Now Offered In Illinois

6-year-old Sammy Nahorny became our first patient to undergo high-dose MIBG radiation for neuroblastoma. (Photo: Zbigniew Bzdak, Chicago Tribune)

6-year-old Sammy Nahorny became the first patient to undergo high-dose MIBG radiation for neuroblastoma at the University of Chicago Medicine Comer Children’s Hospital. (Photo: Zbigniew Bzdak, Chicago Tribune)

The University of Chicago Medicine Comer Children’s Hospital has become the first in Illinois to offer pioneering, targeted, high-dose, intravenous radiation therapy for relapsed neuroblastoma and other difficult-to-treat cancers. The hospital is one of only about a dozen across the country equipped to administer this advanced therapy, called metaiodobenzylguanidine or MIBG, which requires highly-specialized staff and a dedicated lead-lined patient room designed to minimize radiation exposure to families, other patients and staff. Read more about the treatment in our Newsroom:

“MIBG is one of the most effective therapies available with a response rate of about 30 percent,” said neuroblastoma expert Susan Cohn, MD, director of clinical research in the section of pediatric hematology and oncology at Comer Children’s Hospital. “Over the last several years, we’ve developed an outstanding care team here at Comer Children’s Hospital with expertise in neuroblastoma, nuclear medicine and radiation safety. We’re pleased to have the facilities in place to provide every effective modality of treatment so that families do not need to travel away from Chicago to receive MIBG or other cutting-edge therapies.”

In April, 6-year-old Sammy Nahorny became the first patient to undergo MIBG therapy at Comer Children’s Hospital. After spending 5 days mostly alone in the MIBG room, Sammy is now back home with his family in Nebraska, and will be throwing out the first pitch at a Chicago Cubs game on June 22.

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