Surgical Oncology News

This section features a sampling of news related to surgical oncology from the popular press, from press releases received, or SSO news directly pertinent to SSO members.

Cancer surgeons encourage screenings

Author: Candace Chase, Daily Inter Lake
Jun 26, 2011

Dr. David Sheldon and Dr. Sydney Lillard [SSO members] say that universal screenings such as colonoscopies would drastically change their patient numbers.

"About 85 percent could be prevented if we saw it (cancer) when it was a polyp," Sheldon said.

Both fellowship-trained in surgical oncology, Sheldon and Lillard are the only such specialists in Montana. Practicing as Northwest Montana Surgical Associates-Surgical Oncology, the two surgeons see too many patients who weren't screened for colon cancer at the recommended age of 50.

"I see a fair amount of more advanced stage," Lillard said.

Sheldon said some Montanans just don't have easy access to these screenings. He pointed out that people living along the Hi-Line don't have any gastroenterologists in their area.

Lillard added that the stoic character of hard-working Montanans sometimes causes them to brush off symptoms. When these include changes in bowel habits, particularly bleeding, doing nothing is the worst course of action.

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