Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology Program

Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology Program(514) 340-8222 x 3460
Medical Director:Petr Kavan, MD
Clinical Administrator: Dina Linardos, BScN, CON(C)
Clinical Navigator: Sherry Hogan

Young adulthood is a time of transition; establishing independence, developing responsibilities, and making plans for the future. A cancer diagnosis during this period can cause significant life disruption, financial hardship and social isolation. Young adults have unique developmental, psycho-social and physiologic characteristics which require a tailored approach to encourage treatment adherence and the best outcomes.  

The Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology Program was established in 2003 as a joint venture between the McGill University Departments of Oncology and Medicine. By addressing the unique challenges and needs of the young adult population, the interdisciplinary team works together to provide care that is sensitive and adapted to cancer patients between the ages of 18-39. This age criteria is based on the recommendations of the National Cancer Institute of Canada. The program has a clinic at both the Segal Cancer Centre as well as at the MUHC-Royal Victoria Hospital.

The goals of Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology include:

1. To provide optimal interdisciplinary care to this unique patient population, that requires a distinctive treatment approach.

2. To register more adolescents and young adults in multi-centre research protocols and projects, at the national and international levels.

3. To develop and participate in in-house protocols for this patient group.

4. To improve the quality of teaching and research in this field of cancer therapy.

5. To improve patient access to social services, and psychological and psychiatric support. 

Clinical Care

The AYA-Oncology interdisciplinary team is comprised of physicians (medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, surgeons, family medicine physicians, palliative care specialists), nurses, fertility experts, physiotherapists, an occupational therapist, dietitians, exercise physiologists, pharmacists and a psychosocial support team (psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers) who work together to provide optimal treatment and support to the patients. As required, the team also confers with physicians representing specific tumour sites (hematology, neuro-oncology, orthopedics, urology, hepatobiliary and gastrointestinal surgery etc.), pathology, genetics, and health professionals in occupational therapy and lymphedema therapy.

Eligible patients are referred from tumour board discussions, emergency admission, family physicians and self-referral. Triage is conducted by Program-dedicated oncologists after which a consultation is conducted and the patient is processed.

In order to provide holistic care to the AYA population, The AYA-Oncology interdisciplinary team offers individualized services, including: fertility consultation, assessment of the impact of illness on daily activities, monitoring of physical and cognitive functioning, rehabilitation services, nutrition assessment and education, and psycho-social support for patients and families. 

Clinical trials are offered through the program if indicated as part of medical treatment. Each patient is given individualized support including education material to help throughout their treatment process. In addition, they are given a free Vo-Pak™ backpack generously provided by the  VOBOC (Venturing Out Beyond Our Cancer) Foundation. Patients and their families are encouraged to ask questions at any time during the course of their treatment and follow-up. Psychosocial support and patient support groups are an integral part of the AYA Oncology Program and patients are encouraged to make use of these services even after their treatment is complete. Patients continue to have follow-up visits with the AYA Oncology team long after their treatment has ended.

AYA Oncology Team 
Medical OncologistsFamily Physicians
Petr Kavan, MDMylene Arsenault, MD
Michael Palumbo, MDPalliative Care Physician
David Melnychuk, MDBertha Fuchsman, MD
Radiation OncologistClinical Navigator
Thierry Muanza, MDSherry Hogan
Pivot NursePharmacist
Daphnee Lamoussenery, BSc. Inf.Marie-Pascale Guay, BPharm, MSc
DietitianSocial Worker
Teresa Muccari, PDtChristina Cabral, TS, Psychotherapist
Rehabilitation and ExercisePsychologist

Physiotherapist -
Marize Ibrahim, MSc, Pht 

Exercise Therapists-
Anouline Sintharaphone, CAT (C)
Lisa Masroianni, CET 

Sylvie Aubin, PhD
Occupational TherapistHope & Cope
Kyla Johnson, MScA, OTSuzanne O’Brien, MA



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