Melissa D. Shepherd, Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Huntsman Cancer Institute, discusses the various players involved in the care of a patient with GIST (gastrointestinal stromal tumors).
The GIST health care team consists of (but is not limited to) a surgeon, medical oncologist, pathologist, radiologist, nurses and social worker. Many patients with GIST are referred to a specialty center, Shepherd says, which can provide several advantages.
Health care providers in a specialty center deal with GIST on a more common basis, Shepherd says.
“Often times with specialty centers, too, they’re all housed together — so the surgeon, the radiation doctor, the chemotherapy doctor, they’re all in the same office and talk to each other on a regular basis,” Shepherd says. “[This] can really help smooth the transition between all of your treatments.”