Pediatric Cancer Care

Pediatric Cancer Care at St. Vincent, Indianapolis

A Message from Peyton Manning Children's Hospital

It takes "Determination, Courage and a Caring Spirit" to keep healthy kids healthy and make sick kids well. At St. Vincent's Center for Childhood Cancers and Blood Diseases, the entire staff is pushing the frontiers of pediatric medicine. At Peyton Manning's Children's Hospital at St. Vincent it's "All About the Kids."

This year, nationally, more than 15,000 parents will learn that their child has cancer. It's at that very moment that every family needs a "Caring Spirit" – a team that surrounds our youngest patients and their loved ones with holistic cancer care. We call that "Team Peyton." It's the kind of care that focuses on healing the whole body; soothing the mental strain on the patient and family; and bolstering the spirit of all. What makes our type of pediatric cancer care special is our Determination, Courage and our Caring Spirit.  

St. Vincent's Center for Childhood Cancers and Blood Diseases at the Peyton Manning Children's Hospital at St. Vincent Indianapolis has a Pediatric Cancer Care team that focuses on all types of childhood cancers and blood disorders – and is a certified member of the internationally recognized Children's Oncology Group (COG), a National Cancer Institute (NIH) supported clinical trials group. COG is the world’s largest organization devoted exclusively to childhood and adolescent cancer research and unites cancer experts at 200 leading children’s cancer care hospitals of which St. Vincent in Indianapolis is one.

From newborns to young adults (age 25), we stress family-centered cancer care so that you are never left to navigate this journey alone and you have access to options and opportunities like few other places in the nation.

Our cancer doctors have extensive experience treating malignant and benign tumors, blood cancers, bone cancers, soft tissue sarcomas, as well as, brain and spinal cancers. As diagnosticians, clinicians, researchers, and creators of a personalized, family-centered cancer care plan, we look at the child and see the needs of the entire family. We know there is much more to do than rid the body of a tumor or a blood cancer.

Let us help you navigate the cancer care journey  

  • Central nervous system tumors (brain and spinal cord)
  • Leukemia (acute and relapsed)
  • Lymphoma(Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin)
  • Neuroblastoma
  • Sarcomas
  • Kidney Cancer

Team Peyton

Since 2003 --"The real heroes are at Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital at St. Vincent.” – Peyton Manning, NFL MVP  

The St. Vincent Caring Spirit is the uniform we wear. Our St. Vincent Pediatric Cancer Care Team has lots of players but only one quarterback. In most cases, it's the Pediatric Hematologist/Oncologist, but in other cases, a specialized surgeon may be calling the plays. The lineup is strong because we work together and communicate. Our outstanding playmakers* are driven to make each child healthier and happier.

* The Cancer Care Playmakers --The pediatric oncology nurse practitioners and nurses, registered dietitians, pharmacists, oncology researchers and clinical trial coordinators, social workers and child-life specialists and art therapists, and rehabilitation therapists.  

We also have special teams led by pediatric subspecialists. Every play is designed to deliver the highest quality of care from emergency medicine to medical and radiation to neurosurgery or orthopedics, urology, otolaryngology, cardiology, pulmonology, rehabilitation medicine, and endocrinology.

Josh's Story: Being part of Team Peyton

The pain in Josh's knee came and went, especially after playing soccer. As an 11-year old, not much could slow Josh down. Over the weeks, the pain was steady and that's when the family doctor referred him to the Peyton Manning Children's Hospital at St. Vincent, Indianapolis. After having an MRI and a biopsy, the diagnosis was osteosarcoma (bone cancer) – a mass in the proximal left tibia—a tumor, 5.5 centimeters by 3.5 centimeters.

Osteosarcoma (although considered rare) is the most common bone cancer in children and adolescents between the ages of 10 and 30. In Josh’s case, he first had 9 ½ weeks of preoperative chemotherapy under the direction of Dr. Rassouk, Pediatric Medical Oncologist, before Dr. Rougraff, OrthoIndy Orthopedic Surgeon performed a limb-saving surgery to remove the tumor. This is an alternative procedure to amputation. The surgeon removed the tumor while preserving nearby tendons, nerves and vessels. Josh's growth plate was not damaged. Chemotherapy did its job. Josh and his family are doing their job to continue to strengthen and improve the motion in that knee and leg, while keeping their follow-up appointments with St. Vincent Pediatric Cancer Care specialists. Courage, Determination and a Caring Spirit – that's what Josh and his St. Vincent Cancer Care Team have today and forever. That's what Team Peyton is all about.

Planning a visit?

Peyton Manning Children's Hospital

Peyton Manning Children's Hospital at
St. Vincent Center for Cancer and Blood Diseases
2001 West 86th Street, Entrance 4, 1st floor
Indianapolis, IN 46260
For general information call 317-338-5437

Need directions? Click here »  

The Peyton Manning Children's Hospital at St. Vincent, is located on the north side of Indianapolis and has a full range of inpatient services from the nationally recognized newborn intensive care unit to imaginative inpatient rooms decorated for every age. There are many outpatient services for different childhood diseases. The Center for Childhood Cancers and Blood Diseases (our Pediatric Cancer Clinic) is located on the first floor at Entrance #4.  

Have a question about our child's health, a worrisome symptom or need information about St. Vincent Pediatric Cancer Care services?  

Call the 24/7 Nurse Advice Line – 317-338-KIDS (5437)  

Experienced pediatric nurses are standing by – no medical concern is too small or insignificant. Or go to and request a St. Vincent Pediatric Registered Nurse to call you back at the number you provide. We ask that call-back requests be made by parents 18 years old or older and that you have your child with you when the nurse calls you back. In most cases, you will receive the call within 30 minutes of submitting the online form.

For Emergencies call 911

The St. Vincent Hilbert Pediatric Emergency Department is the only dedicated emergency room for kids on the Indianapolis north side.

Parking is onsite and free shuttles run throughout the campus. Security officers are available at any time to escort visitors to your car.

Overnight Accommodations

We realize no one knows your child better than you do. That’s why our patient rooms are set-up with a sleeper sofa for one parent to stay overnight in the room.

Other Indianapolis north side hotels offer discounts to St. Vincent patients and families. Ask at the information desk, 317-338-5437.

Send a free personalized greeting card to any patient at the Peyton Manning Children's Hospital at St. Vincent. Just complete the online request and pick a card design.  

The Gift Shop, open seven days a week, is located on the first floor near the information desk and is stocked with balloons, sweets, cards, books, small toys, jewelry and collectables.

Interpreter Services are available at all times for the hearing impaired or non-English speaking patients and visitors. Please let your nurse know if you need an interpreter or call the AT&T Language line at (800) 643-2255. TTY (TTD) devices, enabling the deaf to communicate via the telephone, are available from Telecommunications by calling “0” for the operator.

Want to plan a celebration or activity for your child?

Talk to a St. Vincent Childlife Specialists at 317-338-3582.


At the Center for Childhood Cancers and Blood Diseases, our Cancer Care Team (and the visiting TheraPet Westies and Cairn Terriers) are passionate about finding ways to celebrate every day with our young patients and their families.

"When you find joy in the smallest pleasures, and you smile, the healing jumps leaps and bounds." – Dr. Razzouk, St. Vincent Pediatric Hematologist and Oncologist and Medical Director of the Center for Childhood Cancers and Blood Diseases.  

  • Tours of the Hospital including a pre-op fieldtrip with our child-friendly tour guides
  • Developmentally appropriate play groups and bedside activities
  • 1-1 time doing special activities that help distract or provide comfort, including creative projects led by music and art therapists
  • Special events like movie night, holiday celebrations, family dinners and visits by community celebrities.
  • Ask about a visit from the TheraPets of Indiana –especially trained Westies, Cairn Terriers and their caretakers bring smiles and comfort.

If you are part of an organization that is interested in hosting a special event for our patients, please visit Ways to Give

Bassem Rassouk, MD

Bassem Rassouk, MD
Pediatric Hematologist/ Medical Oncologist

Finding answers in Pediatric Cancer Research

St. Vincent Pediatric researchers have devoted their lives to finding a cure for leukemia and other blood cancers. Their work is part of a collaborative system of cancer research being done nationwide. The thoroughness of these efforts is led by Dr. Bassem Razzouk, a nationally and internationally recognized pediatric hematologist/oncologist, researcher and educator. He is the principal investigator for Children's Oncology Group (COG) clinical trials at the Peyton Manning's Children's Hospital at St. Vincent. Dr. Razzouk has a special interest in researching chemotherapeutic agents for the treatment of relapsed leukemia. St. Vincent has a well-established Research Department with dedicated pediatric oncology research associates. Ask your St. Vincent Cancer Care physician about how these clinical studies may benefit your child.

Resources: for parenting tips or call 800-394-3366 (Promoting Healthy Families in Your Community). is a resource about childhood cancers including the Cancer Kid Camps in your state. lists nearly 100 oncology camps available from Children's Oncology Camping Association International (COCA-I).