Category

Cancer

Radiation—something to celebrate

By | Cancer, Proton Therapy, Radiation, Survivors, Technology | No Comments

In this November of thankfulness, radiation may not top most people’s lists—but it should.

This week, we give radiation its due by celebrating National Radiologic Technology Week. Without the scientific discovery and a host of expert healthcare providers trained to diagnose treat patients with radiation, there would be less ability to diagnose everything from broken bones to Alzheimer’s disease—and fewer survivors of cancer. Read More

National particle therapy conference boosts proton therapy’s profile

By | Breast Cancer, Cancer, Clinical Trials, Dr. Ben Wilkinson, Esophageal Cancer, Legislation, Niek Schreuder, Prostate Cancer, research, side effects, Uncategorized | No Comments

Proton therapy got positive billing at the recent Particle Therapy Cooperative Group, as researchers from across the country presented findings that showed proton therapy reduced potentially life-altering side effects and improved survival rates for cancer patients.

The National Association for Proton Therapy (NAPT) released a summary of the results, which included the findings of studies focused on esophageal, prostate and breast cancer. Read More

Breast cancer awareness—know your options

By | Breast Cancer, Cancer, Clinical Care, Dr. Allen Meek, East Tennessee, Knoxville, Patient Experience, Proton Ambassadors, side effects, Survivors | No Comments

Sometimes people just get the genetic short end of the stick, but you’d never know Tammy Coleman was one of those people.

Her upbeat personality and contagious enthusiasm belie two heart attacks, a stroke, congestive heart failure and complications related to high blood pressure. And that was all before she was diagnosed with breast cancer—something that ran in her family.

Genetic testing revealed her as the recipient of a genetic mutation that made it highly probable she would develop ovarian cancer too, so within one day Coleman received a double mastectomy and complete hysterectomy.

She had to do chemo, and doctors recommended radiation as well. Because of her existing health problems, particularly related to her heart condition, specialists recommended proton therapy. The targeted nature of protons allow for the benefit of radiation therapy without the collateral damage to surrounding healthy tissue in heart and lungs. Read More

Breast cancer survivor pledges fight for fairer insurance coverage

By | Breast Cancer, Cancer, East Tennessee, Insurance Coverage, Kentucky, Knoxville, Knoxville Comprehensive Breast Center, Legislation, Patient Experience, Patient Rights, Proton Therapy, surgery, Survivors | No Comments

When Kim Fuller found love and a new home in rural East Tennessee, she was harboring a frightening secret.

She had discovered a lump in her right breast. She told no one—not even her daughters. Read More

Protons perfect treatment choice for pediatric cancer

By | Brain cancer, Cancer, China, Clinical Care, Knoxville, Patient Stories, Pediatric Cancer, Proton Therapy, Provision CARES, side effects, Survivors, Uncategorized | No Comments

They have come from as close as down the road and as far away as China. Their cases have ranged from highly curable to palliative care. They light up lobby with laugher and courage. And they most clearly show cancer for the monstrosity it is.

September is Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month. Read More

Local program combines PSA testing with blood donation

By | Breast Cancer, Cancer, Culture of Care, East Tennessee, Prostate Cancer, Proton Therapy, Provision CARES, Screening, Uncategorized | No Comments

This year Eddie Check is doing the same thing it’s been doing for the past 14 years: providing prostate cancer screenings and blood donations to the people of East Tennessee.

This year’s event kicks off Thursday, Sept. 14, and will be hosted at 12 sites throughout the Knoxville region on Thursday and Friday. The event offers free PSA screenings to men over 40 years old—blood donations encouraged but not required. Read More

Whether a career change or cancer treatment, Bill Raffield is the kind of man who goes for what he wants.

By | Cancer, Clinical Care, Culture of Care, Knoxville, Patient Stories, Prostate Cancer, Proton Ambassadors, Uncategorized | No Comments

That included treatment for prostate cancer.

Raffleld started out with a B.S. in physics and a career in the Air Force where he planned and evaluated instructional systems for the military’s intercontinental ballistic missiles program during the Vietnam War. He became a captain, serving as combat crew commander and wing instructor and discovered he enjoyed “arranging resources to accomplish the mission,” he said. “At the time, I didn’t know what that was called, but in business, that’s operations.”

After his military career ended, Raffield didn’t settle into the field he had chosen but embarked in a new direction, starting out as a territory sales manager for Michelin Tire and ending up management and operations for Truckstops of America and Universal Tire.

“I tended to say, ‘I’m going to do what fits me,” he said. Read More

Prostate cancer treatment: what you need to know

By | Cancer, Clinical Care, Culture of Care, Dr. Ben Wilkinson, Innovation, Patient Experience, Prostate Cancer, Proton Therapy, side effects, surgery, Uncategorized | No Comments

When it comes to prostate cancer treatment, there’s bad news and there’s good news.

The bad news: Prostate cancer ranks the third most common cancer in the U.S. Healthcare providers diagnose more than 200,000 new cases each year. Approximately 14 percent of men will succumb to prostate cancer in their lifetimes. The good news: Most diagnosed with prostate cancer survive. The disease represents 13.3 percent of all new cancer cases. But only 4.7 percent of those diagnosed will die of the disease. Research shows five-year relative survival rates for prostate cancer at 99.7 percent. (National Cancer Institute)

And, proton therapy offers a treatment option for prostate cancer with many fewer short-term and long-term side effects. Read More