Volunteers offer support to patients through nourishing meals

In a community kitchen near downtown Eugene, 14-year-old Eli Panero chops garlic. A lot of garlic. His eyes periodically scan the the counter in front of him for the ingredients he needs to create the recipe, Chicken with Sun-Dried Tomato and Olive Pesto.“I’m really interested in learning how to cook,” he says. “I’d never done it until I came here.”Behind him, Nicolas and Henry, two 16-year-old students from South Eugene High School, are donning aprons [...]

By | April 6th, 2016|Blog, Inside WVCI|

Community answers the call for hat donations

The staff at Willamette Valley Cancer Institute would like to say thank you for the incredible gifts we recently received from the community. Each year, we provide knitted hats to our patients during the cold winter months, which make a big difference, especially for those who’ve lost their hair due to chemotherapy. “Our patients are welcome to take any hat they want. It’s still cold out, and you lose a lot of heat through [...]

By | February 24th, 2016|Blog, Inside WVCI|

Young survivor plans for future after cancer

Lindsey Bills was excited about all the things she would learn when she enrolled at the University of Oregon. She didn’t expect cancer to become part of her learning experience. Everything changed for Lindsey when she noticed a swollen lymph node on the right side of her clavicle in November 2013. “On my 20th birthday, I was on a trip to Portland with some friends,” she says. “During the trip, I would get twinges [...]

What is lymphoma?

Lymphoma is cancer that begins in the cells of the lymphatic system, which is responsible for fighting disease and infection. Because the immune system is found all throughout the body, lymphoma can begin almost anywhere. “Lymphoproliferative disorders (including CLL and NHL) are abnormal accumulation of lymphocytes,” says Dr. Jeff Sharman, director of research at Willamette Valley Cancer Institute. “Lymphocytes are kind of like the brains of the immune system and generally speaking, when they [...]

By | February 15th, 2016|Blog, Inside WVCI, Leukemia/Lymphoma|

Ease treatment side effects with good nutrition

After receiving a cancer diagnosis, it’s normal to feel overwhelmed. You’re likely inundated with information about your cancer, treatment options and prognosis. If nutrition is the last thing on your mind, that’s understandable. Although, what you feed your body is an important part of cancer care. At Willamette Valley Cancer Institute, patients have access to nutrition counseling services with registered dietitian, Shelly Kokkeler. Having specialized in oncology for more than 30 years, Shelly supports [...]

By | February 15th, 2016|Blog, Inside WVCI|

Acts of kindness happen year-round at WVCI

Madison and her grandmother deliver handmade pillows High school senior Madison O’Bannon attracts curious eyes when she steps into the lobby of Willamette Valley Cancer Institute at RiverBend. Perhaps what draw the most attention are the big bags stuffed with pillows that she carries. Madison and her grandmother, Fredericka Smithies, delivered 21 handmade pillows to the chemotherapy room to help make patients more comfortable during their treatments this month. “It’s really special [...]

By | December 15th, 2015|Blog, Inside WVCI|

Taking care of yourself during cancer treatment

Going through cancer treatment can be difficult on your body and it often leaves patients feeling fatigued. There are things you can do now and throughout your treatment to help maintain your energy and ease side effects. Nutrition is important in cancer care Eating the right kinds of foods in the right amounts can make a noticeable difference in your cancer treatment and recovery. “To the best of our knowledge, there’s no super nutritional [...]

By | December 3rd, 2015|Blog, Inside WVCI|

Patience please: New technology in progress

Physicians and staff at Willamette Valley Cancer Institute and Research Center are in the process of implementing a new electronic health records system (EHR) that offers significant benefits to patients. McKesson Specialty Health designed the system, called iKnowMed Generation 2, in collaboration with US Oncology Network physicians, including Dr. Benjamin Cho. It was developed to improve the quality, efficiency and effectiveness of cancer care. "It's a win-win all the way around," says Willamette Valley [...]

By | September 21st, 2015|Blog, Inside WVCI|

Preparing for endometrial cancer surgery

Endometrial cancer surgery is one of the most common procedures performed by gynecologic oncologists at Willamette Valley Cancer Institute. While the procedure is most often a less invasive option than open surgery, patients may still be anxious about what to expect. Endometrial cancer surgery involves a complete hysterectomy, which includes removal of the uterus, the cervix, both fallopian tubes and ovaries. “Sometimes, we also take lymph nodes for biopsy to see if the cancer [...]

By | September 17th, 2015|Blog, Inside WVCI|

What is a clinical trial?

Clinical trials are the centerpiece for the drug-testing system in the United States. Each cancer study conducted tries to answer scientific questions and determine better ways to prevent, diagnose or treat the disease. As researchers test the effectiveness of trial drugs, patients who participate, in many cases, benefit from life-saving treatment options years before they are available to the public. As a member of The US Oncology Network, Willamette Valley Cancer Institute and Research [...]

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