Monthly Archives

February 2014

Rex Ward Completes Proton Therapy Treatment

By | Clinical Care, Culture of Care, Patient Experience, Patient Stories, Prostate Cancer, Proton Therapy, Uncategorized | No Comments

 

When the Victory Bell rings at Provision Center for Proton Therapy, everyone knows it.  Three loud rings resonated through the lobby at Provision Center for Proton Therapy on Feb. 24. They kept sounding over the applause of the gathered staff and well-wishers, announcing the good news: Rex Ward has completed his treatment. He is one of the first patients to complete proton therapy at the new facility, completing four weeks of 20 treatments for prostate cancer.

Rex was in high spirits, shaking hands and cracking jokes, grinning from ear to ear, his wife, Deanna, by his side. Rex said upbeat music is always playing during treatments at Provision, but Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You” was the soundtrack today.  “I do feel that way about these people,” he said. “I’ve had a lot of medical experiences, but I’ve never had one like this.”

When Rex was first diagnosed with prostate cancer, his urologist gave him a lot of options, but proton therapy wasn’t one of them. He knew about the treatment from family members who had gone through the program at Loma Linda, Calif., the first proton therapy treatment facility in the country. He had almost settled on another treatment path when he saw a television commercial featuring Provision’s Proton Guys, volunteers who have gone through proton therapy and now serve as ambassadors for the program.

“We went online, and within a day or two we had an appointment here,” said Deanna.

“It’s a providential thing that this center opened right when I needed it,” said Rex. “God does wonderful things. I am thankful that God gives people the science to be able to do things like this.”  Rex said the treatments have been painless, “like taking an X-ray.”  “I feel great! No side effects, no pain. It’s a real blessing,” he said.

Marcio Fagundes, M.D., board certified radiation oncologist and medical director of Provision Center for Proton Therapy, had two patients complete treatment Feb. 24, Rex and one other.  “Both feel wonderful,” he said. “It’s just a great accomplishment to provide the most advanced treatment available. It’s good to see the patients we’re seeing doing so well.”

Deanna said Dr. Fagundes has been a great support for her and Rex.  “There was no question too trivial, no time that we could not call,” she said.

According to Dr. Fagundes, next steps for Rex include a screening and exam three months from now, followed by screenings every six months for the first five years, and every year after that.

For Rex and Deanna, they plan to stay in touch with the team at Provision.  “The whole staff here is like family,” said Rex. “It’s an experience that I won’t forget.”

Five-Year Proton Therapy Study For Prostate Shows 99% Disease-Free Survival

By | Clinical Care, Prostate Cancer, Proton Therapy, Uncategorized | No Comments

A recent study by the University of Florida Proton Therapy Institute published in the International Journal of Radiation Oncology showed that proton therapy is the most effective treatment for prostate cancer.  This study reported very effective outcomes for low, intermediate and high risk patients with prostate cancer.  It also demonstrated minimal toxicity to the healthy tissues surrounding the prostate resulting in excellent patient-reported outcomes with limited side effects.  Five-year disease free survival rates were 99%, 99%, and 76% in low-, intermediate-, and high-risk patients, respectively.  This compares to rates of 97%, 85%, and 67% reported from a five-year study conducted by Memorial Sloan Kettering using IMRT (Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy).

“The University of Florida study is based on physician-reported and patient-reported outcomes, and it adds convincingly to a large body of evidence regarding the efficacy and unique advantages of proton therapy for prostate cancer,” said Marcio Fagundes, M.D., a board-certified radiation oncologist and medical director of the Provision Center for Proton Therapy. “At the same time, this report debunks the one or two widely reported studies that used sub-standard procedures and surrogate data to draw flawed conclusions.”

Proton Therapy side effects were reported to be minimal.  Gastrointestinal and urologic side effects were 1% and 5.4% respectively.  An earlier study claimed that proton therapy may be more toxic than IMRT.  This study shows that claim to be false.

You can see the complete study at the following link: http://www.redjournal.org/article/S0360-3016(13)03310-5/abstract

A Proton Patient’s Valentine’s Day Gift to His Caregivers

By | Clinical Care, Culture of Care, East Tennessee, Patient Experience, Patient Hospitality, Patient Stories, Prostate Cancer, Proton Therapy, Uncategorized | No Comments

We check back in with prostate cancer patient Rex Ward and find out how his proton therapy treatments are going.  He gives us insight on how he’s feeling and lets us know what he plans to give the Provision Center for Proton Therapy staff for Valentine’s Day.

Victory Bell rings at Provision

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Victory Bell rings at Provision

By: Shannon Carey

Three resonant peals from the Victory Bell rang through the lobby at Provision Center for Proton Therapy Feb. 24.

They kept sounding over the applause of the gathering staff and well-wishers, announcing the good news: Rex Ward has completed his treatment.

He is one of the first patients to complete proton therapy at the new facility. Rex was in high spirits, shaking hands and cracking jokes, grinning from ear to ear, his wife, Deanna, by his side. Rex said upbeat music is always playing during treatments at Provision, but Dolly Parton’s “I will always love you” was the soundtrack today…

To read the entire article published by the Shopper news please Click here.

Provision CARES Foundation Honored with Hope Award

By | Culture of Care, East Tennessee, Patient Experience, Patient Hospitality, Patient Stories, Proton Therapy, Uncategorized | No Comments

Provision CARES Foundation received the inaugural Hope Award for Outstanding Corporate Leadership from the American Cancer Society.   The ACS recognized individuals and entities in the Greater Knoxville area who are making significant contributions in the lives of those facing cancer.  Nominations were taken from Cancer Society volunteer leaders in the Knoxville area, and award winners were selected by volunteers from throughout Tennessee.

WATE Channel 6 sports anchor Jim Wogan hosted the event and told his story of cancer survivorship.   Other Hope Award winners are Bronzie Harris, Outstanding Community Outreach; Janine Bateson, Outstanding Community Research Development; Janine Mingie, Outstanding Health Care Professional; and Bonnie Hufford received the Mary Lasker Award.

The Provision CARES Foundation is honored and blessed to receive this designation and to serve the community in the fight against cancer.  Click here to read the news article.

American Cancer Society awards Provision 2014 Hope Award

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American Cancer Society awards Provision 2014 Hope Award

Cancer Society honors five with Hope Award

By: Mike Blackerby

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Hope has been Bonnie Hufford’s resonant theme since she was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a rare and deadly form of cancer that attacks the blood and bones. Doctors told Hufford in 2009 that her cancer was already in Stage 3, with 3 being the worst. With few drugs available at the time to treat her cancer, Hufford was given a life expectancy of just two to three years.  But hope prevailed as Hufford beat the odds.

Today, Hufford, a day after celebrating her 60th birthday and almost five years since receiving her grim prognosis, is being honored by the Knoxville office of the American Cancer Society as one of five inaugural area recipients of the Hope Award. The luncheon at the Grande Event Center on Clinton Highway will fete Hope Award winners who are involved in various aspects of Cancer Society work, from fundraising and patient support to research and advocacy.  Nominations were taken from Cancer Society volunteer leaders in the Knoxville area, and award winners were selected by volunteers from throughout Tennessee.

Hufford, an instructor of journalism and public relations at the University of Tennessee’s College of Communication & Information, is receiving the Mary Lasker Award.  Lasker was a pioneer health activist and philanthropist who spearheaded fundraising efforts by the ACS. Hufford is a past winner of the ACS “Volunteer of the Year” award in the state, and has been UT faculty adviser for the Cancer Society’s campus Relay for Life teams for a decade.  Under Hufford, UT’s Relay for Life program has raised $630,000. “Bonnie has been an outstanding volunteer for our organization in multiple capacities,” said Scotty Evans, senior representative for community engagement for the Cancer Society. “She is a great all-around volunteer, from her support of the UT Relay For Life to sharing her testimony with others.” Hufford, who recently received great news that her cancer is in remission because of treatment from ground-breaking drugs, said she feels a duty to give back to the cancer community that has supported her. “This award means so much to me because it is coming from the American Cancer Society,” said Hufford. “This isn’t a journey anybody can do alone. If you don’t have friends and family behind you, I don’t know how you can make it.”

Other Hope Award winners are Bronzie Harris, Outstanding Community Outreach; Janine Bateson, Outstanding Community Research Development; Janine Mingie, Outstanding Health Care Professional; and Provision CARES Foundation, Outstanding Corporate Leadership.

Click Here to read this article in the Knoxvillenews.com