The UTMB Cancer Center is emerging as a primary resource for treatment of patients diagnosed with cancer. Like most national centers specializing in cancer, the UTMB Cancer Center has specific clinical expertise in several forms of cancer, including:
Gastrointestinal cancer, including colorectal, pancreatic, liver and hepatobiliary, is a UTMB strength, nationally and internationally. Many members of the surgical team are also involved in related basic and translational clinical research. With the establishment of the Texas Transplant Center at UTMB in 2007, the Cancer Center now provides comprehensive gastrointestinal care, from surgery to treatment including transplantation.
Breast cancer has been an area of excellence at UTMB for more than 25 years. In 2008, UTMB’s Breast Imaging Center was designated a Center of Excellence by the American College of Radiology (ACR). It is one of two in the Houston-Galveston region and one of eight breast oncology facilities in Texas to receive this distinguished designation. Breast oncology, like GI cancer, is attended to by surgeons and clinicians who are also actively involved in translational research.
Head and neck cancer patients are served in the UTMB Center for Cancer of the Head and Neck, a component of the UTMB Cancer Center. UTMB has recruited some of the country’s most accomplished and skilled professionals in otolaryngology, who are providing oncology services in areas of the head and neck, skin, oral cavity, larynx and pharynx, nasal and sinus, and thyroid and parathyroid.
Brain cancer is an emerging area of expertise at the UTMB Cancer Center. In late 2007, UTMB became one of only three Texas medical centers offering radiation surgery using high-energy photon beams that destroy tumors with surgical precision. The device, manufactured by Novalis, delivers precision radiation therapy that conforms to the shape of a tumor with millimeter accuracy, irradiating the entire tumor while protecting surrounding healthy tissue. It has proven especially effective for people with brain tumors, but is also used to treat spine, lung, liver and prostate tumors. It is non-invasive, painless, and it eliminates some of the risk associated with conventional major surgery.
Prostate cancer and its treatment are also high growth areas for the UTMB Cancer Center and the university’s urology team. Using state-of-science techniques, UTMB urology staff are equipped and able to identify early-stage prostate cancer and initiate surgery or treatment early, thus dramatically increasing patient success rates.