Sarah Possato, MS, RD, LDN, CNSC, CSO
Clinical Oncology Dietitian
Midwestern Regional Medical Center
"I feel one of the most important things we offer our patients is a relationship. Over time, we get to know patients individually, which allows us to provide the best care we possibly can. Patients feel comfortable meeting with us because we know them as people, not just as patients."
- Sarah Possato, MS, RD, LDN, CNSC, CSO
- MS, Nutrition - Southern Illinois University, Carbondale
- BS, Nutrition - Southern Illinois University
- Dietetic Internship - Southern Illinois University
- Registered & Licensed Dietitian
- Certified Nutrition Support Clinician
- Certified Specialist in Oncology Nutrition
Practicing Since: 2007
Licensed and registered dietitian Sarah Possato says Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) offers much more than leading-edge treatments and innovative therapies. She insists the personal connection clinicians and other staff have with patients makes CTCA different from other hospitals.
Possato has been a member of the nutrition metabolic support team at CTCA at Midwestern Regional Medical Center since December 2007. She’s helped to care for many fighting cancer. She works with gastroenterologist Dr. Pankaj Vashi to address the needs of inpatients and outpatients at the hospital who are experiencing digestive issues related to their cancer and in need of metabolic support. Dr. Vashi and Possato help see that these patients receive the nourishment they need to maintain their strength.
The dietitian also helps improve quality of life for patients who cannot intake as much food as they normally would. “I take into account what patients are already eating, what they like or don’t like to eat, etc.," she says. "Then I help them focus on the positives in their diet and help them set goals to improve what they are already doing.”
Possato notes that if patients have nutritional deficits, she strives to improve their nutritional status. Involuntary weight loss, vitamin/mineral deficiencies and excessive processed food intake are some examples of nutritional concerns she addresses. Possato also provides recommendations to prevent or offset treatment side effects.
“We often see patients with appetite loss, taste changes or some other barrier to eating,” she adds. “Helping them strategize to find foods or supplements they can tolerate is critical. There are many high-calorie supplements we can offer, as well as medications we can talk with their doctors about prescribing.”
Board certified in oncology nutrition and nutrition support, Possato earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nutrition from Southern Illinois University (SIU) in Carbondale, Illinois. In addition, she completed a dietetic internship through the university.
Possato’s pastimes include spending time with her family, walking her dog, hiking, watching/playing sports, traveling, and of course, eating. But above all, swimming holds a special place in her heart. It’s what brought her and her husband Marcelo together. They both swam for SIU’s NCAA Division 1 team. Today, she coaches a USA swimming club team after hours.