Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Every September, we raise awareness to change this for a brighter future.

Webinar Series

This Brain Tumour Webinar Series features various webinars throughout the year with a variety of topics covered.
New for 2021 – Each webinar will feature both a speaker from the world of brain tumour research and/or medicine as well as a personal story of hope from a brain tumour survivor.
NOTE: There are nine webinars slated for 2021. There are no presentations in July, August or December.

This Brain Tumour Webinar Series features various webinars throughout the year, which will include topics around research, treatment, advance care planning, returning to work after a brain tumour diagnosis, personal stories from brain tumour survivors and caregivers, and more.

 

2021 Webinar Series details:
  • 2021 Brain Tumour Webinar Series PosterAll presentations will run from 1:00 – 2:15 pm EST
  • All presentations are free
  • Presentations may be subject to change. Check back often for updates
  • You must register for each webinar separately
  • All webinar presentations are recorded and uploaded to the Online Videos page within a week of the presentation date. If you register for a webinar but are unable to attend, you will receive a notice as to when the video is uploaded.

Download a Poster for the 2021 Webinar Series (PDF).

 

From an attendee:

“Yesterday’s webinar was excellent. Great slides covering a wide scope of important information and resources, excellent speaker who is obviously very passionate. I want our entire family to watch the presentation. There is a huge scope of issues to consider and keep on top of. Well done and thank you.”

2021 Brain Tumour Webinar Series

Navigating the Twists and Turns of Survivorship: School and Work Considerations for Youth and Young Adults

Tuesday, September 21
1:00 – 2:15 pm EST

Barb Williams, Provincial Coordinator, School and Work Transitions Program at the Pediatric Oncology Group of Ontario (POGO)
Navigating the Twists and Turns of Survivorship: School and Work Considerations for Youth and Young Adults

This presentation will address options and strategies for childhood cancer/brain tumour survivor as related to the later years of high school, transitioning into post-secondary, and achieving post-secondary success, as well as job seeking and the workplace.

 

Stephanie Doucet
Personal Story of Hope

After surviving childhood leukemia, a central nervous system relapse is where Stephanie lost the vision in her right eye and needed a bone marrow transplant. Stephanie completed a B.Sc. in Wildlife Biology and Conservation. Then, while pursuing a Veterinarian Assistant college program, she was diagnosed with a radiation induced meningioma, requiring two surgeries, which left her with no hearing in her right ear. Stephanie has developed many tips and tricks over the years to keep a positive outlook.

Register here

In search of new treatment strategies for medulloblastoma: a story about subgroups, selumetinib and serendipity

Tuesday, October 5
1:00 – 2:15 pm EST

Dr. Tamra Ogilvie, Associate Professor, Biochemistry & Medical Genetics at the University of Manitoba.
In search of new treatment strategies for medulloblastoma: a story about subgroups, selumetinib and serendipity

Dr. Ogilvie’s lab is working on medulloblastoma, a very aggressive pediatric brain tumor. There are at least 4 different kinds of medulloblastoma, all of which have very different clinical outcomes. One of these groups, called Sonic Hedgehog (SHH) medulloblastoma, is very high risk, as some patients survive while many others unfortunately die as a consequence of recurring disease and drug resistance. Thus, one of our goals is to identify new drugs to treat SHH medulloblastomas.

We recently discovered that SHH medulloblastoma cells are killed with a drug named selumetinib. This is exciting as selumetinib can actually get inside the tumor and is currently in clinical trials for the treatment of other children’s brain cancers. Now, we are testing the combination of selumetinib with other known cancer fighting drugs with the ultimate goal of increasing survival and enhancing the quality of life for those children who survive long term.

 

Mckenna Lumley
Personal Story of Hope

Mckenna is an 11 year brain tumour survivor, diagnosed at age of 4 and a half with a pilocytic astrocytoma. She counts herself as one of the fortunate ones and volunteers her time in the hopes of creating a world without brain tumours.

Register here

Changing the Caregiver Experience: Ways to Take Charge and Support Yourself and Your Loved One Living with a Brain Tumour

Tuesday, October 26
1:00 – 2:15 pm EST

Melina Ladouceur, Cancer Coach & Survivorship Care at the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation
Changing the Caregiver Experience: Ways to Take Charge and Support Yourself and Your Loved One Living with a Brain Tumour

All caregivers have their own personal experience with caring for a loved one diagnosed with a brain tumour. For some caregivers, maybe that’s knowing what to say and how to support their loved one when they are struggling or wanting to know how to help them manage side effects or wanting to come up with a plan to take care of yourself and avoid caregiver burnout. In this presentation, you will learn useful tools, resources, and information to help you as a caregiver feel more confident on how you can support your loved one, while also taking active steps to manage stress and prevent caregiver burnout.

 

Erin Dykstra
Personal Story of Hope

In 2016, after 9 months of focal seizures, dismissed by many providers, Erin’s husband Caanan was diagnosed with oligodendroglioma (grade II). He underwent a 9-hour surgery in May of 2016, finished radiation and chemotherapy. Erin and her husband have learned a lot on their brain tumour journey and even as an RN herself was astonished at the level of health literacy required to navigate our system as a caregiver. Erin facilitates the Western Canada Caregiver Support Group once a month to help pass on some of what she has learned.

Register here

Genomic and Molecular Markers in Glioma: Where Are We Now?

Tuesday, November 23
1:00 – 2:15 pm EST

Dr. Mary Jane Lim-Fat, Neuro-Oncologist at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
Genomic and Molecular Markers in Glioma: Where Are We Now?

This presentation will review the current use of molecular and genomic markers in glioma in clinical care and some of the potential benefits and current limitations. We will also discuss how these markers are impacting management decisions for specific groups of patients with gliomas, in particular young adult diagnosed with a glioma.

 

Kyleigh Provenzano
Personal Story of Hope

Kyleigh was originally diagnosed with a low-grade glioma in October 2019. At the time her daughters were aged three, one, and four months. There were signs that something was not right, but she often attributed them to something else. There were times when Kyleigh would lose her train of thought and had trouble forming sentences. These spells lasted only 30-40 seconds – something she attributed to ‘baby brain.’ As of December 2020, Kyleigh is in the “wait and see” phase for surgery because the tumour is in a dangerous spot and too much risk to permanent speech disability.

Kyleigh is our 2020 Cup of Hope Winner! She led the nation in fundraising for the 2020 Virtual Brain Tumour Walk and created a local movement in the process in Sault Ste. Marie. Her team, the Brain Stormers, raised close to $40,000 for Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada, of which, Kyleigh herself raised about $34,000.

Register here

Advances in Radiation: Developing the MR-Linac for Patients with Glioma

January 2021

Dr. Arjun Sahgal, Deputy Chief & Radiation Oncologist at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
Advances in Radiation: Developing the MR-Linac for Patients with Glioma

This presentation will educate us on a new technology called MR-Linac. This is the first machine in the world to combine radiation and high-resolution magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). This hybrid technology lets doctors at the Odette Cancer Centre target tumours and monitor their response to radiation with unprecedented precision – even as a tumour moves inside the body – thanks to the machine’s real-time MRI guidance. Dr. Sahgal will describe this technology and its development and how they are treating patients with glioma with this advanced radiation technology.

Watch Webinar Recording

 

Jodi Quinn
Personal Story of Hope

Jodi will share how she is coping with an incurable brain tumour, while trying to be an active Mom to two small children during a pandemic. Jodi was diagnosed with a glioblastoma (GB) and received radiation treatment with the MR-Linac at Sunnybrook hospital. Jodi will share what her treatment was like both physically and emotionally.

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Advances in Neurosurgery: 5-ALA Fluorescence Guided Surgery

Tuesday, February 23
1:00 – 2:15 pm EST

Dr. John Sinclair, Neurosurgeon at Ottawa Civic Hospital
Advances in Neurosurgery: 5-ALA Fluorescence Guided Surgery

Dr. Sinclair will provide an overview of the advances in neurosurgery using 5-ALA Fluorescence Guided Surgery in the surgical resection of high-grade gliomas. This new technique enables differentiation between tumour and normal brain tissue, allowing a higher degree of resection, and improves patient outcome.

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Stef Scrivens
Personal Story of Hope

Stef was diagnosed with an oligodendroglioma (grade II). Symptoms always differ from person to person based on the type of brain tumour they are diagnosed with, the location and rate of growth of the tumour. For Stef, she experienced morning headaches, simple and complex partial seizures, and exhaustion. These symptoms went on for 8 years until she received her diagnosis.

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Brain Tumour treatment side-effects: A Holistic approach to management

March 2021

Dr. Mary MacNeil Halifax, NS
Brain Tumour treatment side-effects: A Holistic approach to management

Patients receiving chemotherapy and radiation for primary brain tumours may experience side-effects, not only from these treatments, but also from supportive care medications and from the tumour itself. We will focus our discussion on what patients (and caregivers) can do to manage common side-effects related to radiation, chemotherapy, and steroids. Lastly, we will review some practical suggestion on dealing with fatigue, a common and challenging symptom in brain tumour patients.

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Denis Raymond
Personal Story of Hope

Denis is one of our Support Services Specialists on the Programs and Services team at Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada. Denis was diagnosed with a glioblastoma (GB) 7 years ago, and at the time was a teacher, had returned to school to get an MSW and became social worker. Denis has dedicated himself to helping others living in with a brain tumour.

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Psychosocial Screening in Pediatric Brain Tumour Care

May 2021

Dr. Leandra Desjardins, Psychologist Clinician Scientist at Centre hospitalier universitaire (CHU) Sainte-Justine
Psychosocial Screening in Pediatric Brain Tumour Care

A diagnosis of a pediatric brain tumour presents children and their families with many stressors (including disruptions in daily routines, physical effects of treatment, uncertainty about the future). Although most survivors do not experience clinical levels of distress, there is a risk for elevated symptoms of depression and anxiety. Screening for distress is a recommended practice, but progress remains on implementing this in clinical care. This presentation will discuss risk for distress, tools to screen for distress, and progress being made to include this practice as part of clinical care.

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Alicia Chenier
Personal Story of Hope

Alicia was diagnosed with a craniopharyngioma brain tumour at just 6 months old. Now, Alicia is 21 and life with a brain tumour is all she has ever known. She has had 3 brain surgeries, gone through chemo, and more hospital appointments then she can count. Alicia’s brain tumour caused her to lose most of her sight and has a few chronic illnesses, but It has never stopped her from living life to the fullest.

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It's All About Being Adaptive! Rehabilitation When You Have a Brain Tumour

Tuesday, June 22
1:00 – 2:15 pm EST

 

Ilyse Lax, Rehabilitation Consulting at Pencer Brain Tumour Centre, Princess Margaret Hospital
It’s All About Being Adaptive! Rehabilitation When You Have a Brain Tumour

Brain tumours and their treatment impact people’s functioning in various and complex ways. Although traditional rehabilitation programs are effective and gains are comparable to other populations, we see access and navigation issues. Since brain tumours are an evolving condition where needs change as the disease progresses, we require an Adaptive Rehabilitation Framework which includes an individualized approach, meaningful intervention, and the right care at the right time.

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Fatima Issa
Personal Story of Hope

Fatima was diagnosed with a brain tumour in the fifth grade. From then until the age of 26, her life was surrounded around treating my symptoms which were growing as the years and tumor progressed. I finally had surgery and my life did a 180-degree turn. I am now in my third year of medical school and am considerably thriving while healing from my past. I feel blessed and am looking forward to becoming a neurologist to help those in the same situation as I was once in.

Watch Webinar Recording

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Looking for a webinar that was previously recorded? They can all be found here:

Online Videos