Research funding is vital to improve retinoblastoma early diagnosis, life and sight-saving treatment, family support, survivor care, and cancer prevention. But securing the funds for rare cancer research is very tough, often demoralising for researchers and clinician-scientists. Three retinoblastoma researchers share their experience, and two organizations helping to drive Rb research forward invite you to help.
Understanding how retinoblastoma affects children is critical to improve diagnosis, treatment, support and outcomes for all. Mattan Arazi, M.D and Ido Didi Fabian, M.D., MPH, world-focused ophthalmologists from Sheba Medical Centre, Israel, explore why global data and collaboration are so important in Rb research, and the knowledge, progress, and hope they are building for families and professional teams worldwide.
The human mind can subtly influence scientific research, with potentially serious consequences for patient care and outcomes. Rb survivor and WE C Hope CEO, Abby White, explores the nuanced world of cognitive and unconscious biases in retinoblastoma research, and strategies that can minimize their impact to ensure objective research and the best care possible for all.
Multicentre research is complex. Challenges can arise in the process of bringing its many benefits to patients, families and professionals. In part 2/2 of this article, Rb survivor and WE C Hope CEO, Abby White, explores common challenges, with solutions for each, and how our childhood cancer community encourages healthy, successful collaborations.
Retinoblastoma is highly stressful for most patients and their families. Too often, it is a traumatic life experience that has long term impacts on mental health. Jules Verdugo, child life & pediatric psychosocial care student, looks at the difference between normal stress reactions and PTSD, symptoms, how to get help, resources, some strategies for managing symptoms, and post traumatic growth.
Retinoblastoma is a rare cancer, posing major challenges to researchers everywhere. In part 1/2 of this article, Rb survivor and WE C Hope CEO, Abby White, explores the many ways multicentre research collaboration can overcome these challenges and change patient care and outcomes – for the child, survivor, family and professional.
Sharing knowledge and experience, and working together, are vital to build better retinoblastoma care. WE C Hope CEO, Abby White, highlights two key meetings on the horizon that will unite professionals, scientists, and parents and survivors who live with the impacts of childhood eye cancer, to advance care for all.
Many families tell of delayed pathways to care when their child is diagnosed with eye cancer. Orthoptist and retinoblastoma care coordinator, Sandra Staffieri, and leukocoria awareness advocate, Megan Webber, are frustrated by the repeated stories and their negative patient impacts. They explore why these delays continue, some efforts to overcome the challenges, and where they find hope for the future.
Every child with retinoblastoma, parent, sibling, survivor, and medical professional has a story to tell of their journey through childhood eye cancer. Understanding our individual and collective experience empowers us to develop and deliver holistic care for all. Rb survivor and WE C Hope USA Director, Clayonia Colbert-Dorsey discusses the growing field of ethnography research, and how it can positively impact our diverse global community.
Retinoblastoma care is a complex balancing act. Some children receive too little treatment, while others receive more than necessary, with potentially devastating results. Sharing two children’s stories, Rb survivor Abby White explores what under- and over-treatment are, when they may happen, their consequences, and how we can prevent them.