Vaginal Cancer Gynecologic Oncology
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Video: Gynecologic OncologyLearn about gynecologic oncology
Gynecologic oncologist Dr. Sybilann Williams talks about different treatments for gynecologic cancers.
Gynecologic Oncology at Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA)
The Gynecologic Oncology Program at Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) at Midwestern Regional Medical Center (Midwestern) specializes in treating women with cancer of the reproductive organs, including uterine, ovarian, cervical, vaginal and vulvar cancers.
Dr. Sybilann Williams, an experienced gynecologic oncologist, leads this exceptional program.
What Is a Gynecologic Oncologist?
A gynecologic oncologist is a medical doctor who receives an additional four years of training after completing a residency in obstetrics and gynecology. During this training, he or she acquires highly specialized expertise to stage, diagnose and treat all types of gynecologic cancer.
In addition to performing specialized surgical procedures, a gynecologic oncologist is trained to provide chemotherapy and comprehensive oncology care to a woman throughout the course of vaginal cancer treatment. We specialize in advanced surgical techniques that remove cancer, while sparing healthy tissue
How Is Vaginal Cancer Treatment Different at CTCA?
As a gynecologic cancer patient exploring treatment options at CTCA, you’ll meet with Dr. Williams and her physician assistant on your first visit. Dr. Williams and her physician assistant oversee every aspect of their patients’ care – from surgery and chemotherapy to nutrition therapy.
“We’ll spend about 1 ½ hours with you during that first visit, acquiring a detailed medical history, discussing everything going on with your health and performing a comprehensive physical exam,” Dr. Williams says. She and her physician assistant will also review your previous chemotherapies or other vaginal cancer treatments.
After reviewing your medical records and health history, and performing a pelvic exam, Dr. Williams will order the appropriate diagnostic tests to determine the best course of treatment. These may include biopsies, imaging scans and blood tests.
You will meet again with Dr. Williams, generally within two to three days of your first visit, to discuss the test results. She will share the treatment options that are available to you, as well as the ways in which supportive therapies can be incorporated into your treatment plan.
Dr. Williams notes: “We really try to think outside the box. We individualize treatment using evidence-based medicine, tailoring a program to each patient. Your treatment plan may include surgery, chemotherapy or therapy with a monoclonal antibody. It all depends on your unique case and preferences.”
How Often Do I Get Treatment?
Once you’ve begun treatment at Midwestern for gynecologic cancer, you’ll meet with Dr. Williams or someone on her team approximately every three to four weeks in our Patient Empowered Care® clinic. Each time, you’ll undergo a comprehensive set of blood tests and a physical exam. Each visit, you’ll also see every member of your treatment team, including your dietitian, naturopath and care manager.
Fertility Concerns for Younger Women
For women with early-stage vaginal cancer, fertility-sparing surgery may be a treatment option. We consider fertility issues for younger women, and we provide support for all women who experience sexual side effects as a result of vaginal cancer treatment, through our Survivorship Support program. If you want to preserve your fertility during vaginal cancer treatment, your gynecologic oncologist can discuss with you a variety of fertility-sparing procedures and whether they might be right for you.
Next Topic: Vaginal Cancer Surgery