Integrative Therapies

The Integrative Therapies Program for Children with Cancer was established in 1998 in memory of Carol Ann Schwartz who died of lung cancer after receiving the most advanced medical interventions. Carol and her caretakers sought alternative treatments but at the time little was known about their efficacy. Her family founded this program to make reliable information on integrative therapies readily available to others.

Our clinicians are leading experts in complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) allowing us to offer a critical component of care to our young patients. CAM therapies (also called integrative therapies when they are combined with mainstream medicine) have been shown to decrease the side effects of cancer treatments in children, alleviate pain and stress and promote a general sense of well being.  All these therapies are available free of charge to patients and their families for as long as needed.

Our mission consists of three components.

  • Education:  Teaching patients and clinicians—physicians, nurses, social workers, and others working in pediatric oncology—about CAM.  Additionally, we educate integrative practitioners about conventional treatments for cancer and strategies to safely incorporate CAM into cancer care.
  • Research:  Conducting national and international clinical trials of the use of CAM in children with cancer.
  • Clinical Services:  Providing a full range of integrative therapies to children and adolescents with cancer and to their family members in both the inpatient and outpatient setting. These services are offered from diagnosis through treatment, and well into survivorship.

The following is a brief guide to integrative therapies, describing how they work. To make an appointment or learn more about our program, please contact (212) 305-9770.