Beverly Lange, M.D., Honored During Alex's Lemonade Stand Event

08/3/2012

Longtime Children’s Hospital oncologist Beverly Lange, M.D., was honored with the “Pitcher of Hope” award during an Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF) fundraising event held last month to support the Center of Childhood Cancer Research. The award is presented annually to a CHOP professional who shows extraordinary commitment to caring for children with cancer.

An oncologist at CHOP for nearly four decades, Dr. Lange has garnered a host of appointments and accolades over the years, including serving as the medical director of the Division of Oncology from 1989-2007, and receiving a lifetime achievement award from the Children’s Oncology Group in 2008. Her recent work has been focused on how cancer therapy impacts pediatric patients’ cognitive function.

Cancer-related cognitive dysfunction currently affects approximately half of all survivors of childhood cancers, and often shows no symptoms for 2-5 years after a tumor is initially diagnosed. Research into this condition, which can affect a patient’s memory and ability to learn, has been hampered by the high cost and inadequacy of available testing methods, Dr. Lange says.

Dr. Lange also investigates the mitigation and prevention of other side effects of cancer treatment. To that end, she and her colleagues recently completed a trial investigating preventing hearing loss associated with cisplatin treatment. Also known by the trade name Platinol, cisplatin is used to treat a variety of cancers, including neuroblastoma, and can cause a number of side effects in addition to irreversible hearing loss.

Originally started in 2000 by then 4-year-old Alexandra “Alex” Scott (1996-2004) as a lemonade stand to raise money for cancer research, over the years Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation has evolved into a robust national organization. Since its inception ALSF has raised more than $55 million to fund over 250 projects, including awarding CHOP $2 million in 2011. The foundation’s close relationship with Children’s Hospital dates to 2001, when the Scott family moved to the Philadelphia area so Alex’s neuroblastoma could be treated at CHOP.