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Issue highlights
Treating prostate cancer
New lung cancer discovery
Benefits of interactive personal health records
Free legal help for Massey patients
Upcoming events

Visit our events calendar for a listing of all Massey events.
Tuesday, Sept. 11
Stonehenge Breast Cancer Golf Tournament

Registration is full, but contact Stephanie Jenks if you would like to sponsor this event or donate an item for the auction.

Wednesday, Sept. 19
Highlands Massey Classic Dinner & Auction

Highlands Country Club
-- 6:00 p.m. cocktails & auction preview
-- 7:30 p.m. dinner & live auction

Thursday, Sept. 20
Highlands Massey Classic Golf Tournament

Highlands Country Club
-- 8:00 a.m. shotgun start
-- 1:00 p.m. shotgun start

Saturday, Sept. 22
Massey on the River

Rocketts Landing
6:00 p.m., rain or shine

Food, music and fun, plus a silent auction - all for a good cause.

Tuesday, Sept. 25
The Latest about Prostate Cancer 


Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden - Education and Library Complex

5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.  


Join Massey's Dr. Michael Hagan as he discusses the causes, prevention, symptoms and latest clinical research for the treatment of prostate cancer.


The talk is free and open to the public, but registration is recommended; call (804) 828-0123.


More information.


Tuesday, Oct. 2
Pink Ribbons of Hope Golf Tournament


Country Club of Virginia - James River Course. Open to all area golfers of all levels.


More information. 


Register online.


Sunday, Oct. 7
The Brickman Richmond Sprint Triathlon
ACAC Fitness & Wellness Center in Midlothian
8:00 a.m. to noon 

Presented by 3 Sports.  Massey is the official charitable partner of the triathlon.

Wednesday, Oct. 10
Total Breast Cancer Care 


Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden - Education and Library Complex

5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.


Join a panel of Massey's renowned breast specialists, including Drs. Douglas Arthur, Gilda Cardenosa, Amelia Grover, Mary Helen Hackney and Andrea Pozez, as they discuss comprehensive care for breast cancer.


The talk is free and open to the public, but registration is recommended; call (804) 828-0123. 


More information


Wednesday, Oct. 10
Breast Cancer is a Witch!


The Shops at 5807

6 p.m. to 10 p.m.


Shop, sip and stylishly proclaim that "breast cancer is a witch!" at the third annual event. Food and drink will be served. Witch hats will be auctioned.


More information



Issue: 6
September 2012

Massey's cancer care rated No. 1 in Virginia


US News Best Cancer Care badgeIn U.S. News & World Report's latest Best Hospitals guide, Massey was rated the top cancer care provider in Virginia and high-performing nationally, and VCU Medical Center was ranked the top overall hospital in the state. The full rankings are available online at

"Massey is pleased to be recognized for its state-of-the-art, compassionate cancer care," said Gordon D. Ginder, M.D., director. "We are committed to discovering new and better cancer treatments that save and improve the lives of individuals with cancer." Read more.


Massey extends its cancer care to Southern Virginia

Dr. Tzann Fang
Dr. Tzann Fang

In a new partnership with Community Memorial Healthcenter (CMH) in South Hill, Massey began providing oncology services there on July 1. Massey physician Tzann Fang, M.D., serves as medical director of CMH's Cancer and Specialty Care and practices at CMH full time. 

Massey will also deliver radiation treatments at CMH beginning in the summer of 2013 after completing the construction of the first and only radiation therapy facility in the southern Virginia region. Learn more.

Active surveillance or immediate treatment?

Many men with prostate cancer and their physicians struggle with this question. There is even controversy over whether to be screened, due to conflicting evidence of net benefit. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force's latest guidelines on prostate cancer screening recommend that doctors should stop doing routine prostate-specific antigen (PSA) testing. Not everyone agrees.


One in six men are diagnosed with prostate cancer in the U.S. each year. Because some of these cancers are potentially fatal, Massey oncologists believe men should discuss screening and treatment options with their doctors.

Fortunately, two-thirds of those diagnosed have low-risk types of prostate cancer that may not need to be treated. Patients are considered "low-risk" when the tumor is small, expected to grow slowly, confined to one area of the prostate and isn't causing symptoms. These men may benefit from a clinical management approach called "active surveillance," which includes serial PSA testing and biopsies to closely monitor the cancer.

"The benefit of active surveillance is to avoid the potential risks of incontinence and impotence, which are among the side effects that can occur with treatment," says Massey radiation oncologist Drew Moghanaki, M.D. "This approach is especially appropriate for men who are highly unlikely to die from their prostate cancer."

Combining radiation therapies lowers the risk of recurrence

A recent Phase I/II clinical trial has shown that a new combination of radiation therapies developed at Massey escalates radiation doses to safely and effectively treat prostate cancer and lower the risk of recurrence with minimal radiation exposure to nearby healthy tissue and organs.

Dr. Michael Hagan
Dr. Michael Hagan

Designed by Massey radiation oncologist Michael Hagan, M.D., Ph.D., this new treatment regimen was tested on 26 prostate cancer patients. After 4.5 years, none of the patients relapsed and the rate of long-term side effects was low.

"Our goal is to improve outcomes for our patients, so we are continually researching ways to reduce unnecessary radiation exposure to healthy tissues and make treatments shorter and more manageable. We're hopeful our findings will lead to better tumor control rates and fewer complications for men with prostate cancer," says Mitchell Anscher, M.D., Florence and Hyman Meyers Chair of Radiation Oncology at Massey. Read more.

Mechanism discovered that promotes lung cancer growth
Cancer is a general term for many diseases in which abnormal cells divide without control and are able to invade other tissues. Normal cells grow and divide in an orderly manner, and when they become old or damaged, they die. One of the ways scientists are developing new treatments for cancer is by discovering the enabling factors that protect and nourish abnormal cell division, and then depriving the cancer of those factors in order to kill the abnormal cells.

Massey researchers are making many of these discoveries. A recent example is a multi-institutional study that has shown that the protein
Paul Fisher, M.Ph., Ph.D.
Dr. Paul Fisher
Bax Inhibitor-1 (BI-1) protects lung cancer cells and promotes tumor growth.
 "We are excited by our findings because they uncover a new pathway that may be an effective target for future therapies to treat advanced lung cancer, one of the leading causes of death worldwide," says Paul B. Fisher, M.Ph., Ph.D., Thelma Newmeyer Corman Endowed Chair in Cancer Research at Massey. Read more.



Interactive personal health records (IPHR) increase clinical preventive services 

Dr. Krist with IPHR
Dr. Alex Krist studies the benefits of interactive personal health records.


Patients who use IPHR are almost twice as likely to be up-to-date with recommended screening tests and immunizations as those who do not, according to a new study led by Massey researcher Alex Krist, M.D., M.P.H.


"Interactive health records allow patients to make informed decisions about their health care, and could have important public health benefits," says Krist. But Krist notes that while cancer screenings and vaccinations increased, participants were unmoved when it came to advice on diet, exercise, smoking or weight loss. Read more.

Is there legal help for the unique issues I face as a cancer patient?

Often, the stressors of jobs, finances, insurance and family matters can be compounded for cancer patients and interfere with their cancer treatment and recovery. Massey leukemia patient Lorraine Meekins wasn't eating because she worried about the custody of her granddaughter if she could no longer care for her.

She is one of many cancer patients who needed legal help but couldn't afford it. Thanks to the Richmond Cancer Advocacy Team (RCAT), she got the assistance she needed. RCAT is a medical-legal partnership that provides on-site legal and financial help to Massey patients concerning problems with employers, claiming unemployment benefits, housing, making or updating a will or power of attorney, debt, applying for public benefits such as Social Security Disability and Medicare, and more. The RCAT office is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesdays and Fridays and additional times by appointment.  Learn more.

Ms. Meekins was interviewed about RCAT on WTVR CBS 6, along with RCAT volunteer attorney Allison Held and Massey social worker Connie Macaluso, LCSW. View the video.

Momentum is published by VCU Massey Cancer Center.

David Raine, Jr.

If you have questions about cancer, cancer treatments or survivorship, please ASK MASSEY.

To learn more about VCU Massey Cancer Center, please visit our Web site at