Foundation announces 2015 COH chair

The SAMC Foundation announced the 8th annual Sandi McCool Champions of Hope Event Chair and Spokesperson, Patty Harris at a news conference on Monday.4492COHChairAnnouncement310x153 Each year a breast cancer survivor is selected as the honorary chair of the Sandi McCool Champions of Hope event. Previous chairwomen include Sandi McCool (inaugural chair and event inspiration), Kelli Cundith, Kelli Hall, Franzie Bondy, Melinda McClendon and most recently Sandy Brooks.

Harris, a 6-year survivor, credits her successful journey to her mother, Doris McLamb, and early detection. In 1974, a 22-year old Harris found out her mother had been diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. At 47 years old, Doris lost her battle with breast cancer and from that point on Harris knew she had to be proactive. At age 50, after years of mammograms, Harris believed she had dodged the breast cancer bullet. It was not until 6 years later that Harris received a phone call from Hugh Holloway, MD, that revealed Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS) in her mammogram. Harris learned she had the earliest form of breast cancer.

After some research, Harris chose to proceed with a lumpectomy and 6 weeks of radiation treatments with radiation oncologist Steve Stokes, MD, at Southeast Cancer Center. Throughout her treatment journey, she credited the quick actions of her Dothan medical team for giving her the opportunity to catch the disease early.

"My message for Champions of Hope is early detection," Harris said. "My journey was scary but it could've been a lot scarier without early detection."

Join Patty Harris on Saturday, October 17 on the ACOM campus as she represents not only herself but her mother and other survivors and pre-vivors during this year's Sandi McCool Champions of Hope.

Cancer center receives new technology

On Monday, August 24, the Southeast Cancer Center used its Optical Surface Monitoring System (OSMS) for the first time during a stereotactic radiosurgery procedure. OSMS is also indicated for use in stereotactic body radiotherapy and deep inspiration breath hold radiation therapy.

"As we deliver radiation to the accuracy of .1mm, we have to4980BuckyBuchananRSMSSetup310x153 ensure the patient remains still to the same degree," said Scott Griffin, director, Southeast Cancer Center.

The OSMS technology monitors patient movement during treatment by comparing images from ceiling mounted sensors to existing CT imagery that was created during treatment planning. If movement is detected, beam delivery is interrupted until the patient returns to the allowable position for treatment.

"This is somewhat of a first for the nation," Griffin added. "Although OSMS technology is not new, our application is the first time it has been retrofitted to a Varian Trilogy linear accelerator. Typically OSMS is integrated with the installation of a newer accelerator."

OSMS will be included when SAMC installs its new True Beam linear accelerator later this year. This will double our capacity for these advanced procedures, which require involvement from our neurosurgeons.

Bucky Buchanan, chief nuclear physicist, Radiation Oncology, performs quality assurance tests prior to the first stereotactic radiosurgery case using OSMS on August 24.

Women’s Center 3rd Level Cross Walk closing for repairs

The cross walk from the West parking Deck to the Women’s Center will be closed for repair beginning September 21 through the 25.5715WomensCenterWalkway310x153 This will also include the drive way that passes under the cross walk. This closing will impact patient, visitor and employee flow as well as emergency and routine vehicular traffic.

During this time, no traffic will be allowed through the cross walk and no traffic will be allowed under the cross walk. All emergency vehicles will need to access the Emergency Department from the South from Alma Street. All patient and visitor traffic will also need to access the Outpatient Building and Emergency Department from the South from Alma Street. Patients and visitors may enter the Heart and Vascular entrance to access Women’s Center and Heart and Vascular Center services.

Appropriate signage will be in place during this closing. Thank you for your cooperation!