Diagnose

What is cancer?

Cancer happens when cells that are not normal grow and spread very fast in a certain part of the body. Normal cells grow, divide and then die. Cancer cells do not stop growing and dividing. Instead of dying, cancer cells can come together to form a tumor, such as:

  • Neuroblastoma
  • Brain tumors
  • Wilms’ and other kidney tumors
  • Bone and soft tissue sarcomas
  • Retinoblastoma
  • Other rare tumors

Not all tumors are cancerous and not all cancers form tumors. Some cancers involve the blood and the organs that make blood in the body. These include:

  • Leukemia
  • Lymphoma
  • Histiocytic and lymphoproliferative disorders

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Our comprehensive programs and services

Because of our large size, we are able to offer programs with teams of providers dedicated to each of the major types of childhood cancers. This degree of specialization means that every child is cared for by a team that is focused solely on his disease.

Our cancer programs include:

  • Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Program (AYA): We provide treatment and support for the unique needs of young people ages 15 to 21 who are diagnosed with cancer.
  • Brain and Spinal Cord Tumor Program: We have one of the largest pediatric brain tumor programs in the country, caring for more than 700 children and young adults with brain tumors each year.
  • Leukemia and Lymphoma Program: Each year, we care for approximately 140 newly diagnosed children with all forms of leukemia and lymphoma.
  • Solid Tumor Program: We are home to one of the only programs in the Southeast offering therapeutic MIBG to patients with neuroblastoma.
  • Survivor Program: We help fill the specific needs of child, adolescent and young adult patients after completing cancer therapy or blood and marrow transplant. Our program currently serves more than 1,500 survivors.

Second opinion and international services

We understand you want to be certain your child is receiving the best possible treatment available anywhere in the world. Second opinions can help provide the information you need to make an informed decision about the treatment for your child. For families traveling outside the U.S., we are here to help meet your unique needs and challenges.

Learn more about our second opinion services

Learn more about our international services

Treat

A full range of treatment options

We offer a full range of treatment options for children and young adults with cancer. Treatment for pediatric cancer depends on the type of cancer. We will create a treatment plan just for your child, as treatment approaches can vary. Our team works closely with each family to determine the best course of action. Treatment options may include:

  • Chemotherapy (chemo): A group of medicines that kill or damage cancer cells.
  • Radiation therapy: The use of high-energy rays to kill or damage cancer cells.
  • Surgery: To remove as many of the cancerous cells as possible.
  • Blood and marrow transplant: To help rescue blood stem cells after chemotherapy.
  • MIBG therapy (for neuroblastoma): One of the most effective treatments for children with relapsed neuroblastoma. We are one of the only centers in the Southeast offering this treatment.
  • Rotationplasty (for bone tumors): Removal of a portion of a limb, while the remaining portion of the limb is rotated and reattached. Typically, the child’s ankle joint becomes his knee joint.
  • Developmental therapeutics: We offer some of the most promising new cancer treatments for children who have relapsed or who have difficult-to-treat cancers.

Innovative research

The Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center is committed to excellence and innovation in pediatric cancer and blood disorders research. We are home to one of the largest clinical trial programs in the country—offering our patients access to some of the most novel childhood cancer and blood disorder treatment options in the country.

Learn more about our research efforts


Support

Camps, events and support groups

Camps, retreats and other events offer many therapeutic benefits for children and families who are dealing with serious illness.

Camps, events and support groups

Family support services

Patients and their families have basic and extraordinary mental, physical, emotional and spiritual needs, and Children's has many services available to meet them.

Learn more about what you can expect during your stay

Transitional housing

Many families travel great distances to the Aflac Cancer and Blood Disorders Center to receive care. To meet the needs of those families, we offer transitional or temporary housing options that have been carefully chosen for safety, cleanliness, amenities and proximity.

Learn more about our temporary housing options, transportation for out-of-town patients and amenities 

Donate

Learn how you can help make a difference in the life of a child battling a blood disorder.

Join the fight against childhood blood disorders


Locations

Egleston hospital

1405 Clifton Road NE

Atlanta, GA 30322

Hughes Spalding hospital

35 Jesse Hill Jr. Drive SE

Atlanta, GA 30303

Scottish Rite hospital

1001 Johnson Ferry Road NE

Atlanta, GA 30342-1605

Children's Medical Office Building at Scottish Rite hospital

5461 Meridian Mark Road NE

Atlanta, GA 30342-1654