Our Nationally Recognized Team
Our accomplished physicians are leaders in the field and hold roles in the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN). Roswell Park oncologists not only follow the evidence-based NCCN treatment guidelines used by physicians around the world; they write them.
- Roswell Park’s Mark Hennon, MD, FACS, serves on the NCCN panels that develop the clinical practice guidelines for the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer and malignant pleural mesothelioma; and Saraswati Pokarel, MD serves on the panel for the treatment of small-cell lung cancer.
- Recognized as a High Performing Hospital for Lung Cancer Surgery, by U.S. News & World Report, Roswell Park is a leader in minimally invasive thoracic surgery. Our thoracic surgeons have high-volume experience in minimally invasive thoracoscopic surgery that results in a shorter hospital stay, less pain and blood loss, faster return to normal activities and improved tolerance to additional therapy.
- Roswell Park’s Lung Cancer Screening Program aims to detect lung cancer early — when it is most curable — by screening and monitoring those most likely to develop the disease, especially current and former smokers. As a result, 70% of lung cancers detected through our program are found at an early stage, compared to national trends, in which the majority of lung cancers are diagnosed at later stages, significantly impacting survival.
Our Cutting-Edge Therapies
We offer treatments at the forefront of cancer care, plus clinicians with the knowledge and experience to use them. Our patients with lung cancer may opt for a treatment plan that includes:
- Personalized therapies matched to your tumor’s genetic profile. We use advanced molecular testing developed at Roswell Park, OmniSeq Comprehensive, which decodes a tumor’s DNA to look at 144 genes and identify genetic mutations for which we can offer a targeted therapy or a clinical trial drug.
- Immunotherapy approaches are providing some of the latest, most promising new treatments for lung cancer, and Roswell Park and our Center for Immunotherapy are pioneers in the field. Roswell Park patients have access to these newest options, oftentimes years before they become available to other providers.
- CIMAvax-EGF Lung Cancer Vaccine is lung cancer immunotherapy developed in Cuba and now available in the United States only through a clinical trial at Roswell Park. Our trial uses the CIMAvax-EGF vaccine in combination with the anti-PD1 checkpoint inhibitor nivolumab (Opdivo®) in patients previously treated for advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
- Clinical trials of the latest options for lung cancer patients. By the time a new cancer therapy becomes commercially available, it may already be ten years old or more. The only way to access the very latest drugs and approaches is through a clinical trial. Roswell Park’s clinical trials program offers a number of new approaches for patients with lung cancer.
- Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT) provides radiation to lung tumors with unprecedented precision, sparing surrounding healthy tissue. Compared to traditional radiotherapy, SBRT delivers higher and more effective radiation doses, with reduced side effects and in fewer radiation treatments, replacing up to 35 treatments with just one session.
Our Quality, Comprehensive Care
We provide multidisciplinary cancer care that integrates the expertise from several specialists, including oncology-focused thoracic surgeons and interventional pulmonologists, medical and radiation oncologists, dietitians, physical therapists and more as part of our cancer care pathway for every patient with a lung cancer diagnosis. Our comprehensive care includes:
- Supportive & Palliative Care that provides essential support and symptom management to patients facing difficult symptoms such as pain, nausea, poor sleep, or anxiety related to cancer and its treatment, or who may be feeling overwhelmed or don't have the support they need to get through their treatment. Our team will take the time to listen to you, assess your symptoms and provide a way forward to relieve your symptoms, improve quality of life and ease emotional distress and anxiety.
- Survivorship program that focuses on your continued lifelong wellness and quality of life. Our wide range of services are designed to help you manage the emotional, physical and spiritual aspects of life after cancer.
Our physicians and scientists collaborate to advance the science and improve cancer care through our robust research program. With our emphasis on translational research, we strive to translate the latest scientific discoveries new treatments, technologies and applications to help our patients with lung cancer today. Some of our innovative accomplishments include:
- OmniSeq Comprehensive tests your tumor’s DNA and RNA to identify genetic alterations in the cancer, which are “actionable,” meaning we have a drug or anti-cancer agent available that targets that genetic mutation. This test looks at 144 specific genes. Patients can be matched with a targeted therapy, or a new agent in a clinical trial, that is personalized for their tumor.
- OmniSeq Immune Analysis, developed at Roswell Park, examines multiple biomarkers to learn of unique abnormalities of a patient’s immune system and predict which immunotherapies would provoke the best response.
- Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a technique pioneered at Roswell Park that uses non-thermal visible red light from a laser to destroy cancer cells that have been treated with light-sensitizing drugs. Because the laser light must reach the tumor directly, Roswell Park surgeons have developed a way to perform Intra-operative photodynamic therapy to allow more patients to benefit from PDT and improve their outcome.
- The Stacey Scott Lung Cancer Registry, the first of its kind in the world, collects and stores biological samples, scans, and medical and lifestyle information from thousands of lung cancer survivors and others at high risk. Cancer researchers use the information to learn how lung cancer begins and how it can be detected earlier so treatment can be more effective.