Interview with Professor Marc Wijnen

The month of February marks two very special days on calendars throughout the world: February 4th, World Cancer Day, and February 15th, the International Day of Childhood Cancer, when organisations, institutions, doctors and families around the world come together to raise awareness on behalf of those who are fighting this disease every single day.

In honour of these very important occasions, Best Doctors is pleased to feature an exclusive interview with Professor Marc Wijnen, Director of Surgery at the recently inaugurated Prinses Máxima Centre for Paediatric Oncology in Utrecht, the Netherlands.

As the leader of the surgical team for this new centre of excellence, Dr Wijnen comes to Princes Máxima with extensive experience in general and paediatric surgery. He himself specialises in the surgical treatment of solid tumours of the abdomen and chest.

In what ways is cancer in children different from adults? In general childhood cancers advance rapidly and are often treated with chemotherapy before operation. Chemotherapy is often very effective and local control after chemo is achieved by surgery, radiation, or both. If we divide cancer into those affecting bodily fluids (blood, bone marrow) and solid tumours, which are the types most commonly seen in children? Roughly 50% of all cases are so-called fluid type cancers such as leukaemia and lymphomas. About 20% are brain tumours and 30% are solid tumours (such as those originating in the kidney, liver, nerve tissue, soft tissues of Read more