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Meet the cancer care team at Upstate

The multidisciplinary breast cancer team at the Upstate Cancer Center. (PHOTO BY ROBERT MESCAVAGE)

The multidisciplinary breast cancer team at the Upstate Cancer Center. (PHOTO BY ROBERT MESCAVAGE)

A team approach to cancer treatment means a patient has more than one doctor taking care of him or her, plus additional medical experts focusing on specialized aspects of care.

Here are some of the typical team members at the Upstate Cancer Center:

Medical oncologist – is usually the doctor who coordinates your care. He or she may specialize in a particular type of cancer.

Surgeon – removes cancer surgically, before or after additional treatment, and sometimes instead of additional treatment. Plastic surgeons may become involved to help reducing scarring or reconstruct body tissue.

Radiation oncologist – prescribes and oversees radiation therapy to shrink or eliminate tumors.

Your primary care doctor – remains an important resource for patients during their cancer treatment.

Psychologists and psychiatrists – treat anxiety and depression during and after cancer treatment.

Nurses – are part of every aspect of your treatment and are good resources for explaining what to expect and how to manage cancer-related pain and other side effects.

Technicians – assist doctors or nurses in many facets of cancer care.

Social worker – can provide referrals for services patients may need during and after cancer treatment, including home health care. He or she can also help with the adjustment after diagnosis.

Radiologist – uses medical imaging technology – such as X-rays, ultrasounds and magnetic resonance imaging – to help make a diagnosis.

Nuclear medicine physician – is involved in molecular imaging and molecular therapy.

Medical physicist – works with interventional radiologists, nuclear medicine physicians and radiation oncologists.

Pathologist – interprets laboratory tests and evaluates cells, tissues and organs to help make a diagnosis.

Geneticist – specializes in cancers that are inherited from a parent. He or she can tell whether someone is at an increased risk for developing certain types of cancers based on his or her personal and family history of cancer.

Registered dietitian nutritionist – advises patients about how to eat during treatment.

Integrative therapy practitioners – help improve healing through Reiki, yoga, acupuncture and more.

Physical therapist – works with patients who need rehabilitation as part of their cancer care.


Request an appointment

Reach the Upstate Cancer Center by calling 315-464-4673.

Cancer Care magazine fall 2017 coverThis article appears in the fall 2017 issue of Cancer Care magazine.