Tahlequah Daily Press

Features

October 15, 2013

TCH offers extensive care

A comprehensive four-step treatment program ensures the busy center will have the best plans of actions for its patients

TAHLEQUAH — In Cherokee County and the surrounding area, people dealing with cancer have access to a state-of-the-art local facility.

Through its Northeast Oklahoma Cancer Center, Tahlequah City Hospital’s on-site cancer treatment capacity is on par with that of any urban hospital or research university.

“I am in charge of radiation therapy oncology at the center,” said Dr. Daniel Murphy. “We have a basic linear accelerator - the most advanced available. With this standard platform, we can perform 85 to 90 percent of radiation treatments. If someone needs something more advanced, we can refer [him or her] to another facility.”

The NOCC also has a PET/CT scanner, which can be used to determine whether cancer is present or to plan treatments. Digital data is scrutinized at multiple computer terminals.

“In radiation oncology, there are four treatment steps: evaluation, simulation, planning and delivery,” Murphy said. “The PET/CT scanner allows us to determine where in the body radiation therapy is to be applied.”

The center is busy. Murphy said 35 patients were scheduled for radiation therapy on Wednesday, with many other patients visiting for other treatments.

Patients can receive medical oncology, or chemotherapy, at the center through visits by doctors from St. Francis Hospital in Tulsa.

“They are outstanding medical oncology doctors,” Murphy said. “We also have excellent surgical expertise at the hospital as well. Most surgeries can be performed at TCH.”

Murphy said almost all of his patients are referred, often by specialists.

“An example might be a primary care doctor finds an elevated [prostate-specific antigen] level during a routine screening,” Murphy said. “The patient is likely to be sent first to a urologist. The urologist then might need to send the patient here for appropriate treatments.”

The NOCC maximizes its services to allow patients to get as much treatment as possible at one facility, but Murphy said cancer treatment is a team effort.

“In Oklahoma, there are only so many people who do what I do,” Murphy said. “Doctors in this area who treat cancer know one another. We all participate in national meetings and undergo constant retraining and certification to stay on top of our fields and those of each other.”

Asked why he entered such a demanding sphere of medicine, Murphy said he chose radiation oncology precisely because it is a tough job.

“It is so difficult and challenging,” he said. “I got interested in radiation in high school and really enjoyed physics. During my medical education, I realized I was good at psychology, pathology, radiology and surgery. This is what I want to do. Radiation oncology is actually one of the hardest fields to enter now. There are always lots of applications and lots of advances in the field.”

Murphy said it’s important that cancer patients are aware of the array of services offered at the NOCC.

“The main thing people need to remember is that TCH is part of a complete cancer treatment program,” Murphy said. “We recently treated a patient sent to us by Duke University Medical Center. People know about the Northeast Oklahoma Cancer Center. We have a great reputation and we work hard to maintain it.”

srowley@tahlequahdailypress.com

1
Text Only
Features
  • rf-Faith-7-29.jpg New opportunity opens door for local pastor

    A unique opportunity for ministry training will begin next year in Tahlequah.
    The River Ministries will be launching The River Training Center, a complete ministry school. The training center will also perform community outreach and sponsor mission trips, all beginning in January 2015.
    The founder of the school, Pastor Brandon Stratton, was raised in Tahlequah and previously pastored Calvary Assembly of God Church.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 22ndAmendment.jpg Presidential terms limited by 22nd Amendment

    The past 30 years have been marked by occasional grumbling from one American political party, and celebration from the other - depending on who occupies the White House - about the disqualification of a president after eight years of service.
    For much of the nation’s history, a presidency could last indefinitely.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • sg-Paperbacks.jpg Paperbacks still survive in the digital age

    In an era when mobile technology is always at hand, most people can access an electronic book at any time. Such literary luxuries weren’t widely available to previous generations until the dawn of the paperback book.
    Wednesday, July 30, is set as a day to celebrate the low-cost, portable book during National Paperback Book Day.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • rf-skydiver-tomahawk.jpg Former resident tapped for national skydiving award

    A man known locally for putting Tahlequah on the international map by bringing world-class skydiving events to town is being inducted in the National Skydiving Museum Hall of Fame in October.
    Norman Heaton said he’s very honored to be selected for the prestigious award given to people who have made significant contributions to the sport of skydiving.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • 20th-Amendment.jpg Inauguration day changed by 20th Amendment

    Sometimes an amendment is added to the U.S. Constitution that is uncontroversial and virtually unlitigated.
    Such is the 20th Amendment, which moved the seating of the new Congress and the presidential inauguration day to January, and enumerates procedure if a president-elect dies or cannot take office.
    Because the “Lame-Duck Amendment” addresses procedure, it is long.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • rf-School-Fashion.jpg Fashion show to feature local teachers

    A fun fashion event that will provide funds for one lucky area school is coming up next weekend.
    Local teachers and students have until Tuesday, July 22, to sign up for the Teacher and Student Back 2 School Fashion Show at Arrowhead Mall in Muskogee.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • rf-actress.jpg TV’s ‘Mistresses’ has second local tie

    Tahlequah has at least two ties to the TV drama “Mistresses.”
    Local florist Josh Cottrell-Mannon designed the flower arrangements for the show’s season finale, and Arriane Alexander, daughter of local resident Sharilyn Young, is portraying a television news reporter.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • rf-Stark-Sequoyah.jpg Stark enjoys making a difference

    Kristin Stark, Sequoyah Elementary Teacher of Year, loves teaching, and has a desire to make a positive difference in the lives of children.
    “I love making a difference in the lives of children; it is a wonderful feeling to make a positive impact on a child,” said Stark.

    July 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • sr-19thAmendment.jpg Women got the vote with 19th Amendment

    During its first 140 years, the United States Constitution underwent a series of changes intended to extend voting rights to those who were not white or didn’t own property - but as the American experiment entered the 20th Century, half the adult population still had no protection to vote.
    Though they certainly had political opinions, women could not cast a ballot in most states. That changed with passage of the 19th Amendment.

    July 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • renee-storyteller.jpg Cherokee, Tlingit storytellers to share their craft during special NSU event

    Two Native American cultures will be represented during a storytelling workshop featuring Cherokee Gayle Ross and Tlingit and Cherokee dancer and storyteller Gene Tagaban, of Seattle.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

Poll

Do you believe school administrators and college presidents in Oklahoma are paid too much?

Strongly agree.
Somewhat agree.
Somewhat disagree.
Strongly disagree.
Undecided.
     View Results
Tahlequah Daily Press Twitter
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating
Stocks