Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU Massey Cancer Center

Communication in cancer care

Headshot of Laura Siminoff for Blog Post

Communication between cancer patients, caregivers, health care teams and researchers is critical to building trust, sharing information and making informed decisions. Laura A. Siminoff, Ph.D., Theresa A. Thomas Memorial Foundation Chair and associate director for cancer prevention and control at Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center, was recently awarded two multi-million dollar grants to study how communication affects specific cancer outcomes.

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VCU Massey introduces new, high-tech radiation technology to improve cancer care

Patient using TrueBeam in blog post

VCU Massey Cancer Center has made a significant investment in improving the region’s cancer care by becoming the only cancer care provider in Richmond to utilize the TrueBeam™ linear accelerator. This advanced machine incorporates the latest image-guided radiation therapy technologies and higher dose rates to more accurately target patients’ tumors while sparing healthy tissue, reducing side effects and decreasing treatment times. The advanced capabilities of the TrueBeam™ system allow physicians to better treat complex cancers such as lung, liver, prostate and head and neck tumors that are close to vital organs and delicate tissue.

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Massey and Spotsylvania Regional Cancer Center open new high-tech radiation therapy center in Fredericksburg

Opening of the Spotyslvania location

Spotsylvania Regional Medical Center (SRMC) opened a new cancer center – Spotsylvania Regional Cancer Center – that features state-of-the-art radiation oncology services jointly delivered by Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center. The Spotsylvania Regional Cancer Center encompasses 7,000 square feet and features a Varian TrueBeam high energy linear accelerator and 4-D General Electric Optima Simulator that offer innovative radiation treatments, including image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT), intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), high dose rate afterloading, partial breast irradiation, prone breast treatment and respiratory gating.

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Letter to a new patient

Photo of Susan Mellette for blog post

Letter to a new patient by Susan J. Mellette, M.D.. In 1960, Susan J. Mellette, M.D., a well-known national and international leader in the field of cancer rehabilitation and cancer education, was appointed as director of the Division of Cancer Studies, an academic unit that was the forerunner of Massey Cancer Center. She retired in 1995 after serving almost 50 years in oncology. She passed away in 2000. Her legacy and tremendous impact on patients will live on forever.

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Procedure reduces pain and discomfort in breast cancer patients

Sentinel Node Biopsy for Blog

In a study of over 750 patients conducted between 2005 and 2010, Huan Vu, M.D., and other surgical oncologists at VCU Massey Cancer Center examined whether injecting radiocolloid in patients under general anesthesia during a surgical biopsy was as reliable in identifying the sentinel lymph nodes as injecting radiocolloid preoperatively, or before surgery. The results of the study showed that giving the injections after patients had been given general anesthesia was just as effective as preoperative injections.

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