Dr. Shilpa Gupta of Cleveland Clinic provides an overview of the multidisciplinary bladder cancer care team and discusses the key role of the patient on the team.
Dr. Shilpa Gupta is the Director of the Genitourinary Medical Oncology at Taussig Cancer Institute and Co-Leader of the Genitourinary Oncology Program at Cleveland Clinic. Dr. Gupta’s research interests are novel drug development and understanding biomarkers of response and resistance to therapies in bladder cancer. Learn more about Dr. Gupta, here.
You’ve spoken about a multidisciplinary care team for bladder cancer patients. Who are the members of that team?
So, the multidisciplinary care team are all the key players who participate in patient’s care.
The urologist who, for the most part, diagnoses patients. Because patients are, let’s say, having blood in the urine, they see a urologist, bladder mass.
Then it’s the medical oncologist like us who are kind of the neutral folks where even if the patient is undergoing surgery, we offer some treatment. If a patient is undergoing radiation, we offer some treatment. If a patient is metastatic disease, then sometimes, they just see us, unless they have some complications or if they have a new spot in the bone where we want them to get radiated then we include that.
Then there’s the radiation oncologist, whose role comes for patients with localized disease. So that a patient, when they are diagnosed with bladder cancer and have localized disease, they should know all their options. That surgery is one option.
Radiation can be another option, and they have options to preserve their bladder too. I think that’s what a multidisciplinary clinic comprises.