"From the receptionist to the doctors, everyone who worked with me was kind, polite, and provided a quality service. It was a great experience, and I wish every cancer treatment facility could be that great.”
At 66, Kathy Driscoll is a woman who made a career in connecting others together: specifically through collegiate administration. Amiable and organized, she knows the immense value in teamwork and support: social traits, which would become even more pronounced later in life. Following a checkup, the retired administrator met with starling news: her pulmonologist discovered cancerous tumors in her lungs, and quickly recommended she receive chemotherapy at a nearby center. Unfortunately, her experience was less than favorable, as she found the staff to be impersonal and unwilling to accept her independence.
“I had to make it very clear that the person who is in charge of me is me,” she says. “And that was the person who was going to make these decisions on healthcare.”
Kathy needed to work with specialists who shared the same kindness and friendliness as her, and set her sights to the office of Dr. Brian Samuels, MD in Post Falls, Idaho. To treat Kathy’s lung cancer, Dr. Samuels recommended a dual approach: he would conduct chemotherapy while Dr. Karie-Lynn Kelly, MD would utilize the TrueBeam system at the Spokane CyberKnife and Radiation Oncology Center. The multidisciplinary team utilized the most advanced cancer fighting treatments and technologies, and because of these cutting-edge methods, Kathy was able to conveniently undergo chemotherapy and image-guided radiotherapy at the same time.
Under the TrueBeam system, Dr. Kelly treated Kathy for her tumors. This procedure was chosen because of the new level of synchronization between imaging, patient positioning, and motion management, which improves precision and accuracy and reduces treatments times by 50%. Because of TrueBeam’s accuracy, patients receive much less radiation to surrounding healthy tissue compared to systems found at other centers, reducing side effects and improving patient’s quality of life.
Under the skilled hands of the staff, and with the combined force of chemotherapy and the TrueBeam, Kathy sailed through her treatments, and other than common fatigue, Kathy felt no negative side effects.
Fellowship and support are key elements of a patient’s well-being, and the Spokane CyberKnife and Radiation Oncology Center is proud of the strong community it has helped foster. Since her time at the center, Kathy has made it a personal goal to help fellow cancer patients join the community, and is appreciative of the friends she has made. The fight against cancer can be daunting, and the center strives to use its talents, care, and technology to give patients like Kathy the most clinically proven treatments possible.
“I enjoyed my experience at the Spokane CyberKnife and Radiation Oncology Center more than any other part of my treatment. It was clean, new, and easy to get around in,” Kathy exclaims. “The people I met at the center provided excellent care in helping me get around the facility, gave me excellent care, and treated me like family. And afterwards, I went back and gave them flowers and plenty of hugs!”