Pediatric Solid or Central Nervous System Tumors

The Pediatric Cancer Program at City of Hope offers the latest in comprehensive, family-centered treatment for children, adolescents and young adults with a wide range of solid tumors, from musculoskeletal cancer and sarcoma to tumors of the central nervous system (CNS), such as brain and spinal tumors.

Pediatric Musculoskeletal Cancer and Sarcoma Program

City of Hope has one of the largest musculoskeletal cancer programs in California, treating patients of all ages who are referred to us by physicians across the country. Children with musculoskeletal cancers and their families find more than hope here — they also find expedited diagnosis, staging and treatment. 

Musculoskeletal cancers can be especially aggressive and fast-growing. That’s why, at City of Hope, you will be treated by a team of specialists who collaborate on the best course of treatment for you. This multidisciplinary team includes surgical oncologists, medical oncologists and radiation oncologists, working together with pathologists, radiologists, rehabilitation experts and others to achieve the best possible outcomes. 

Our patients also have access to the latest clinical trials through the Children’s Oncology Group and industry-sponsored trials.

Sarcoma and Musculoskeletal Cancer Treatment

Treatment for these bone and soft tissue cancers can include: 

  • Chemotherapy
  •  Immunotherapy
  • Targeted therapies 
  • Surgery
  • Radiation 

By using both powerful anti-cancer drugs and alternative therapies, we have been able to successfully spare the patient’s limb in 85% of cases. 

We are also a national center for the use of expandable prosthetic implants for limb-sparing reconstruction in children and adolescents. These expandable prostheses are able to “grow” using noninvasive or minimally invasive techniques, accommodating a child’s continued growth without multiple major surgeries. Using these devices, we can reduce the number of surgeries and improve recovery time.

Living With Sarcoma and Musculoskeletal Cancer

Patients also benefit from our uniquely patient-centered approach to treatment and supportive care.

  • Because we treat patients of all ages in our musculoskeletal program, if a child requires continued treatment or follow-up care into adulthood, your family can stay with the care team you know and trust. 
  • Since sarcomas tend to affect adolescents and young adults, we have unique support programs to assist with patients’ challenging transition into adulthood. Supportive care is provided by psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers and child life specialists, including support long after treatment through the Childhood, Adolescent and Young Adult Survivorship Program.
Pediatric Brain and Spinal Tumor Program

The Pediatric Brain and Spinal Tumor Program at City of Hope offers comprehensive, family-centered and innovative treatment for children, adolescents and young adults with malignant and benign tumors of the brain and spinal cord. For nearly two decades, we have offered lifesaving treatments and clinical trials including gene therapy, CAR T cell therapy and stem cell therapy.

Pediatric Brain and Spinal Tumor Treatment

Our board-certified experts in pediatric oncology, radiation therapy and neurosurgery provide treatment for a wide variety of brain and spine tumors, including:

  • Glioblastoma multiforme
  • Medulloblastoma/primitive neuroectodermal tumor
  • Brain stem glioma
  • Astrocytoma
  • Ependymoma
  • Optic glioma
  • Germ cell tumors of the brain and spine
  • Rare brain tumors
  • Childhood and young adult tumors that have metastasized to the brain

City of Hope is also a member of the Children’s Oncology Group, which provides access to the nation’s largest group of pediatric and adolescent clinical trials. In addition, our team of neurosurgeons offers world-class neurosurgical techniques for tumors of both brain and spine. We were also the first hospital in Southern California to provide helical TomoTherapy, which dramatically decreases the side effects of radiation treatment.

Pediatric Neuroblastoma, Wilms Tumor and Other Pediatric Cancers

The Pediatric Cancer Program at City of Hope offers the latest in comprehensive, family-centered, treatment for childhood, adolescent and young adult patients with neuroblastoma, Wilms tumor and a wide variety of other benign and malignant solid tumors that require expert specialty care.


Neuroblastoma represents both a diagnostic and a treatment dilemma that requires expert understanding of a tumor’s biology. City of Hope physicians have the expertise to interpret laboratory data, as well as a patient’s clinical examination results, in order to guide treatment.

As a member of the Children’s Oncology Group, City of Hope has access to the nation’s largest group of pediatric and adolescent clinical trials for neuroblastoma, with treatments that include chemotherapy, autologous hematopoietic pediatric stem cell transplant, retinoic acid therapy and antibody therapy (anti-Ch14.18) for aggressive neuroblastoma.

Pediatric team members are working with several research initiatives at City of Hope that are seeking to develop new therapies for neuroblastoma.

Wilms Tumor

Wilms tumor is a cancer of the kidney. What was once a deadly cancer is now survived by nearly 90% of patients. Determining the correct treatment increases the chance of cure and requires expertise that only decades of experience can provide.

At City of Hope, our clinicians will guide you on the best course of treatment. Treatment can require subspeciality care with medical oncologists, surgeons and radiation oncologists working together to achieve the best clinical outcome. Our partnership with the Children’s Oncology Group provides access to the nation’s largest group of pediatric and adolescent clinical trials for Wilms tumor.

Other Solid Tumors

Children, adolescents and young adults can have many other types of tumors. City of Hope is a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center and our pediatric oncology team delivers the best care available. We offer expert treatment for the following diseases:

  • Germ cell tumors
  • Thyroid cancer: City of Hope is one of a few centers in Southern California that offers comprehensive care with collaboration between endocrinology and pediatric oncology
  • Melanoma
  • Carcinoma of head/neck, including larynx or tongue
  • Rare tumors of children, adolescents and young adults

Our physicians are leading research to find better treatments for children, adolescents and young adults with these tumors. For more information on our pediatric research, including ongoing clinical trials, visit City of Hope’s Clinical Trials website.

Supportive Care and Survivorship

Our pediatric solid tumor programs at City of Hope also provide you access to several supportive care resources, including:

Pediatric Solid/CNS Tumors Care Team
Behnam Badie, M.D.
Neurosurgeon; Heritage Provider Network Professor in Gene Therapy

Behnam Badie, M.D., is a renowned neurosurgeon and expert in the field of surgical neuro-oncology, nanotechnology and T cell research.

Meet Neurosurgeon Mike Y. Chen, M.D., Ph.D. | City of Hope

A prolific researcher and talented surgeon, Mike Y. Chen, M.D., Ph.D., has been on City of Hope's neurosurgery team since 2007. He specializes in complex operations for the removal of brain and spine tumors.

Dandapani Savita
Savita Dandapani, M.D., Ph.D.
Radiation Oncologist

Savita Dandapani, M.D., Ph.D., is a radiation oncologist at City of Hope who specializes in improving treatment outcomes and reducing side effects for cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy.

Lisa Feldman, M.D., Ph.D.

Lisa Feldman, M.D., Ph.D., is a neurosurgeon and assistant professor in the Department of Surgery at City of Hope.

Meet Surgical Oncologist I. Benjamin Paz, M.D.
I. Benjamin Paz, M.D.
Surgical Oncologist

I. Benjamin Paz, M.D., is a nationally renowned surgical oncology surgeon, with expertise in breast cancer, gastrointestinal and rectal cancers, and tumors involving the bone and soft tissues.

City of Hope Chief Clinical Officer Vijay Trisal, M.D., F.A.C.S.
Vijay Trisal, M.D.
Surgical Oncologist

Vijay Trisal, M.D., the Dr. Norman & Melinda Payson Professor in Medicine, is the system chief clinical officer responsible for setting the vision and direction for systemwide quality, patient safety, and developing guidelines for clinical pathways and protocols.

Meet Dr. Leo David Wang
Leo David Wang, M.D., Ph.D.
Pediatric Hematologist-Oncologist

Leo David Wang, M.D., Ph.D., is a pediatric hematologist-oncologist and associate professor in the departments of Immuno-Oncology and Pediatrics.

Janet Yoon, M.D. City of Hope
Janet Yoon, M.D.
Pediatric Hematologist-Oncologist

Janet Yoon, M.D., is a clinical professor and medical director of the Pediatric Musculoskeletal Tumor Program, Department of Pediatrics at City of Hope Duarte.

Stephanie Yoon, M.D.
Stephanie Yoon, M.D.
Radiation Oncologist

Stephanie Yoon, M.D., is a radiation oncologist at City of Hope. Dr. Yoon focuses on treating breast cancer, brain tumors and spine tumors, because of the way cancer in those regions threatens the essence of what makes people who they are — their personalities, experiences, sensations and memories. 

Margarita Munoz, PA
Margarita Munoz, PA
Pediatric Oncology/Sarcoma Physician Assistant
Margarita Munoz is a pediatric oncology/sarcoma physician assistant in the Department of Pediatrics at City of Hope. She has more than 25 years’ experience working as a PA in pediatric hematology/oncology, with 21 years at City of Hope. Education Bachelor of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Southern California Master’s in Public Health, University of California, Los Angeles Certified as a physician assistant (PA-C) through the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants Licenses and Affiliations Licensed with the Physician Assistant Board (PAB) of California Affiliated with the American Academy of Physician Associates, California Association of Physician Assistants, the Association of Physician Assistants in Oncology, the American Society of Clinical Oncology and the Children’s Oncology Group
Yossyanne Simbolon, PNP
Yossyanne Simbolon, PNP
Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
Yossyanne is a board-certified pediatric nurse practitioner in the Department of Pediatrics at City of Hope. She currently provides care to pediatric patients in the acute care setting and has served the community as a primary care provider and as nurse educator in both clinical and theoretical settings Education Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Loma Linda University Master of Science in Nursing, from California State University, Long Beach Licenses and Affiliations Board of Nursing California Pediatric Nursing Certification Board End of Life Care Association of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Children’s Oncology Group NIH National Cancer Institute