Overview

My primary area of interest is in the biology, management, and late effects of childhood brain and spinal cord tumors. I participate in the Children's Oncology Group (COG), a North American multi-institutional collaboration in treatment of childhood cancer and clinical and supportive care trials. I also participate in the Canadian Pediatric Brain Tumour Consortium, where we collaborate nationally in conducting research in pediatric brain tumors. Locally, I participate in research at the clinical level where treatments, quality of life, late effects of treatments, and other clinically-related questions are evaluated.

Publications

Improving diagnosis of pediatric central nervous system tumours: aiming for early detection
Canadian Medical Association Journal
Ran D. Goldman, Sylvia Cheng, D. Douglas Cochrane
DOI: 10.1503/cmaj.160074
11/2016

Outcomes of children with central nervous system germinoma treated with multi-agent chemotherapy followed by reduced radiation
Journal of Neuro-Oncology
Sylvia Cheng, John-Paul Kilday, Normand Laperriere, Laura Janzen, James Drake, Eric Bouffet, Ute Bartels
DOI: 10.1007/s11060-015-2029-1
01/2016

Pathological Findings of a Subependymal Giant Cell Astrocytoma Following Treatment With Rapamycin
Pediatric Neurology
Sylvia Cheng, Cynthia Hawkins, Michael D. Taylor, Ute Bartels
DOI: 10.1016/j.pediatrneurol.2015.05.020
09/2015

Do we need a formalized humanism and professionalism curriculum in pediatric hematology and oncology training?Humanism and Professionalism Curriculum in Training
Pediatric Blood & Cancer
Sylvia Cheng, Meera Rayar, Angela Punnett
DOI: 10.1002/pbc.25638
07/2015

Improving the Curriculum in the Pediatric Hematology and Oncology (PHO) Residency Program
Paediatric Blood and Cancer
06/2015

Long term outcomes in children with intracranial germinoma: a single institution experience from 2000-2013
Neuro-Oncology
06/2014

Early deaths in pediatric acute leukemia: a population-based study
Leukemia & Lymphoma
Sylvia Cheng, Jason D. Pole, Lillian Sung
DOI: 10.3109/10428194.2013.850685
11/2013

Early deaths in pediatric acute leukemia: a population-based study
Paediatric Blood and Cancer
09/2013

Pathological findings of subependymal giant cell astrocytoma following treatment with mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibitor Rapamycin
Paediatric Blood and Cancer
06/2013

Completing a scholarly project during paediatric residency: motivators, barriers, and enablers
Paediatric and Child Health
06/2013

Discrete choice experiment produced estimates of acceptable risks of therapeutic options in cancer patients with febrile neutropenia
Journal of Clinical Epidemiology
Lillian Sung, Shabbir M. Alibhai, Marie-Chantal Ethier, Oliver Teuffel, Sylvia Cheng, David Fisman, Dean A. Regier
DOI: 10.1016/j.jclinepi.2011.11.008
06/2012

Health-related quality of life anticipated with different management strategies for febrile neutropenia in adult cancer patients
Supportive Care in Cancer
O. Teuffel, S. Cheng, M. C. Ethier, C. Diorio, J. Martino, C. Mayo, R. Wing, L. Sung, S. M. H. Alibhai
DOI: 10.1007/s00520-012-1397-8
02/2012

Health-related quality of life anticipated with different management strategies for paediatric febrile neutropaenia
Paediatric and Child Health
06/2011

Health-related quality of life anticipated with different management strategies for paediatric febrile neutropaenia
British Journal of Cancer
S Cheng, O Teuffel, M C Ethier, C Diorio, J Martino, C Mayo, D Regier, R Wing, S M H Alibhai, L Sung
DOI: 10.1038/bjc.2011.213
06/2011

Symptomatic Congenital Vallecular Cyst in a Neonate
The Journal of Pediatrics
Sylvia S. Cheng, Vito Forte, Vibhuti S. Shah
DOI: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2009.01.076
09/2009

Research

Delayed Diagnosis of CNS Tumors in Children
Central nervous system (CNS) tumors in chidlren account for a quarter of all cancers in children but diagnosis is often delayed as symptoms are not specific and more benign conditions are more common. Furthermore, the diagnosis of CNS tumors necessittes a comprehensive clinical history and complete examination in addition to advanced imaging. Delay in diagnosis of CNS tumors in children can be devastating for families and clinicians and time to diagnosis is critical in an effort to provide the best surgical and non-surgical care. Despite ample research and improvements in quality and access to diagnostic imaging, time to diagnosis in children has been less than optimal with reports of 5-8 months from time of symptom presentation to diagnosis. Therefore, we hope to retrospectively evaluate the time to diagnosis of CNS tumors in children in British Columbia with the aim of developing an algorithm and educational tools to aid health care providers in management prospectively.

International DIPG Registry
Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG) is a devastating brainstem tumor that occurs in young children. Despite attempts of novel therapeutics or conventional radiation therapy, the prognosis remains dismal. Therefore, the primary aim of the DIPG Registry is to collaborate with all pediatric centers internationally to form a clinical, radiological, and tissue repository for the basis of a platform to provide collaborative efforts and research to occur in an extremely rare disease.

Headstart 4
Earlier generations of multi-center "Baby" protocols have demonstrated the feasibility of chemotherapy-only strategies for young children with newly diagnosed malignant brain tumors. The disease-free survivals attained with these regimens, however, remained worse compared to regimens that include radiation therapy. The previous generations of Headstart studies (1-3) demonstrated favourable outcomes for certain patient groups. Recent genomic advances in RNA and DNA profiling have identified four molecular subgroups of medulloblastoma that confer prognosis. However, all the analyses to date have been conducted on patients where the majority received radiation therapy. Therefore, the primary aims of Headstart 4 is to determine prospectively, in a randomized fashion, whether there is a difference in event-free and overall survival in those who receive a dose-intensive tandem consolidation vs. single consolidation in high risk patients with medulloblastoma and embryonal CNS tumors based on prospective molecular risk stratification.

Research Group Members

Carla Willems