SGO Issues March 6, 2014
Nadeem Abu-Rustum presents first Farr Nezhat lectureship
Foundation for Gynecologic Oncology to present 2014 Honors and Awards
Winter Meeting’s Best Abstract Presentation, Scientific Poster named
AstraZeneca joins SGO Industry Corporate Council
End of GOG Marks a New Beginning | B.J. Rimel
Important deadlines and reminders
Nadeem Abu-Rustum, MD, from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY, will be the first Farr Nezhat Surgical Innovation Session speaker at the SGO Annual Meeting on Sunday, March 23, during Scientific Plenary III from 7:45 a.m. – 9:20 a.m.
Dr. Abu-Rustum is Vice Chair for Technology Development, Department of Surgery; Director, Minimally Invasive Surgery, Gynecology Service; and Chair, Surgical Quality Assessment at Memorial Sloan-Kettering. His 15-minute presentation, “Novel Surgical Staging in Endometrial Cancer,” has three main points:
- Women with endometrial cancer should be treated by gynecologic oncologists.
- There is increasing precision in surgery for staging of endometrial cancer with minimally invasive approaches and the sentinel node mapping algorithm.
- Moving into a binary grading system for endometrial cancer pathology reporting should be considered.
This is the inaugural year for the Farr Nezhat Lectureship at the SGO Annual Meeting. Farr Nezhat MD, FACOG, FACS, in collaboration with his brothers Camran Nezhat, MD, FACOG, FACS, who developed the technique of Video Assisted Endoscopy that revolutionized modern day surgery, and Ceana Nezhat, MD, FACOG, FACS, performed some of the most advanced endoscopic procedures for the first time, including a radical hysterectomy, paraortic and pelvic node dissection, bowel, bladder, ureter, diaphragm resection, Sacrocolpopexy, vesicovaginal fistula and major vascular injury repairs and laparoscopy during advanced stages of pregnancy.
“I have known the three Nezhat brothers since 1990 and they have contributed tremendously to the advancement of gynecologic surgery and the care of women with gynecologic disorders,” said Dr. Abu-Rustum. “I am very honored to be the first Farr Nezhat speaker on innovative surgical care in gynecologic oncology.”
Four Foundation for Gynecologic Oncology awards—including a new multidisciplinary award—will be presented during the SGO Annual Meeting Opening Ceremony on Saturday, March 22, from 8:00 a.m. – 8:25 a.m.
Ronald D. Alvarez, MD, Honors and Awards Committee Chair, will present awards in four categories:
Innovation Award: Honors exceptionally creative thinkers who significantly impacted the understanding of and/or approaches to the prevention, diagnosis or treatment of gynecologic cancers.
2014 Winners: Mary Claire-King, PhD; Henry T. Lynch, MD
Distinguished Service Award: Recognizes individuals who, over an extended period of time, display a continuous outstanding meritorious service in the field of gynecologic oncology.
2014 Winners: The founders of the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology’s Gynecologic Oncology Division Board: George C. Lewis, Jr., MD; John L. Lewis, Jr., MD; J. George Moore, MD; James H. Nelson, Jr., MD; and Felix Rutledge, MD.
The current ABOG Gynecologic Oncology Division Board Members will accept this award on behalf of the late founders: Laurel W. Rice, MD; Robert L. Coleman, MD; Jeffrey M. Fowler, MD; Bobbie S. Gostout, MD; Thomas J. Herzog, MD; Fidel A. Valea, MD
Humanitarianism and Volunteerism Award: Recognizes an individual for exemplary local, national or international volunteer and outreach efforts in women’s cancer care, research or training.
2014 Winner: Groesbeck Parham, MD
Harry Long Multidisciplinary Award: Established in 2013, the Harry Long Multidisciplinary Award recognizes outstanding SGO Members for their contributions to multidisciplinary mentorship, collegiality or teaching in the field of gynecologic oncology.
2014 Winner: Deborah K. Armstrong, MD
Kari Ring, MD, and Fernanda Musa, MD, will receive the Winter Meeting Best Abstract and Best Scientific Poster Awards, respectively, during the SGO Annual Meeting on Sunday, March 23.
Jubilee Brown, MD, SGO Winter Meeting Fellowship Chair, will present the 2014 SGO Winter Meeting Awards at the Scientific Plenary III: The Farr Nezhat Surgical Innovation Session, on Sunday, March 23, from 7:45 – 9:20 a.m.
Dr. Ring won Best Abstract for “Is rad/let/met more than just a catchy name? A preclinical evaluation of everolimus, letrozole, and metformin in recurrent endometrial cancer.”
Dr. Musa will be honored for the poster, “mTOR complex inhibition as a novel therapeutic strategy in high grade papillary serous ovarian cancer.”
SGO is pleased to welcome AstraZeneca to the Industry Corporate Council. Comprised of select leaders in the pharmaceutical and device industry, the SGO Corporate Council is a means for SGO leaders and its industry partners to focus on initiatives of mutual concerns in gynecologic oncology.
Last month I joined hundreds of gynecologic oncologists in making our yearly pilgrimage to San Diego, CA. For the past four decades, members of our subspecialty would assemble for the Gynecologic Oncology Group (GOG) semi-annual meeting. The GOG has conducted the vast majority clinical trials in gynecologic cancer and the group is responsible for most of the treatment advances in these diseases over the last 45 years. Now, due to major changes in the way that the National Institutes of Health (NIH) funds clinical trials, we are part of a larger group. We have joined up with the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project (NSABP) and the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG) to create…..wait for it… NRG Oncology.
As I was preparing to leave to attend the meeting, my clinic nurse stopped me in the office with a pile of paperwork to finish before the trip. She paused to ask me, “Why exactly do you go to these meetings?”
It’s a good question. The meetings start at 8:00 a.m. and go nonstop until at least 6:00 p.m. Then there are the after-meeting meetings that start at 6:30 p.m. and go until 9:00 p.m. It’s not a vacation. I don’t leave the conference space until after dark. I miss my family. Sometimes, I miss lunch.
I go because this is the place where gynecologic oncologists go to develop and study ideas that change the way we treat cancer. Sometimes, this means a finding a regimen that provides more time off treatment, or improved survival of a deadly disease by 30 percent, or discovery of a novel drug that might keep that cancer from coming back. This is also a place where experts in rare gynecologic tumors give crystalline lectures describing what we know and don’t know about these cancers. Since most of us will see only a handful of these cancers in our whole career it is imperative to keep tabs on how best to treat.
I go because I want to bring my voice and concepts to the conversation. I go to collaborate with other researchers. I go because I want to hear what others are doing when faced with similar situations. I go to commiserate with other gynecologic oncologists about losing sleep, losing perspective and losing patients to cancer.
So I came to the last meeting of the old GOG and the beginning of the new NRG. The crowd is different. There are more new faces. There are lots of new ideas about how we will prioritize gynecologic cancer in an era of little federal funding. But the ethos is strangely similar. We are all here to find a new way to end cancer as a threat to women.
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