IGCS offers members the opportunity to share their stories with the greater gynecologic oncology community, inspire care givers around the world and strengthen awareness of the profession and society.
Share your story: Answer a few questions to help us learn more about you, your work in gynecologic oncology and what your membership means to you.
Want to suggest someone for Member Spotlight? Tell us about the member who has inspired you here.
Mauricio Magalhães Costa
I decided to pursue a career in gynecologic oncology because gynecological cancer is a public health problem in low- and middle-income countries, especially in Latin America. Developing programs of prevention and early detection is a very important mission and all gynecologists should be prepared to promote it in their communities. From the beginning of my career I felt the importance of this work and started to participate in public campaigns in the Amazon region, slums in Rio de Janeiro and finally as a Professor in the University.
I trained in Radiumhemmet, Sweden with Prof. Nina Einhorn from 1983-1984 and I have served as Head of the Gynecologic Oncology Division at the University Hospital in Rio since 1987. I have been active for 30 years in the fight against women cancer, through academic participation, editorials, social media, event organization, member of boards of directors, specialized committee and executive positions in medical societies and NGOs, locally, nationally in Latin American globally. I intend to use these tools to spread knowledge and improve health care in gynecology oncology.
Nadeem R. Abu-Rustum
I decided to pursue a career in gynecologic oncology to cure gynecologic cancers with the most precise and novel treatment strategies, while minimizing side effects and promoting the highest quality of life to our patients. As Chief of the Gynecologic Oncology Service in the Department of Surgery at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, where I also serve as Vice-Chair for Technology Development and heavily involved on a daily basis with clinical and research activities related to gynecologic oncology. Additionally, as the Avon Chair in Gynecologic Oncology and Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Weill Cornell Medical College I work very closely with all members of our disease management team to promote the highest quality of clinical care and research. My clinical research focuses on surgical therapy for gynecologic cancers and innovative surgical approaches, including sentinel node mapping, improved localization of tumors, fertility-sparing surgery, and laparoscopy. In my current role at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, I am actively involved in the development and improvement of minimally invasive techniques and oversee surgical research programs. I served as a member of the Gynecologic Oncology Group Cervix Committee and the American College of Surgeons Committee on Emerging Surgical Technology and Education. I have authored or co-authored more than 200 publications and is co-author to numerous book chapters and three textbooks in gynecologic oncology. As vice-chair of the NCCN Cervical/Uterine/Vulva Cancers Panel I am actively involved in the development on national guidelines in gynecologic oncology.
IGCS Member since 1996
It strikes me that cancer causes enormous human damage. On the other hand, I am acutely aware that not only cancer but also cancer treatment causes enormous damage and harm to patients. The cost of survival sometimes is very high and this is especially pronounced in surgical oncology, such as in our specialty. My mission is to make the world of surgery more gentle and kinder while not compromising effectiveness. Our speciality is ideally positioned to help women who often don’t demand help for themselves.
I work as a clinician, gynaecological cancer surgeon in the Australia public hospital system and I also established an active private practice where patients specifically ask to see me. I also run a research unit and we have always focused on clinical trials because trials generate research knowledge that can be implemented into clinical practice and translated into real clinical outcomes straight away. I am the driver of clinical trials that established evidence for treatments that reduce some of the suffering from gynaecological cancer. The Cherish Women’s Cancer Foundation, which I co-founded, raises some of the funds that are required to run these clinical trials and the research work that is required to prepare for clinical trials. I also established SurgicalPerformance.com. As gynaecological surgeons we are most of the times convinced that we do an awesome job most of the times. When complications develop we feel down and believe we have done an awful job. SurgicalPerformance allows us to assess our surgical performance rationally and in confidence.
IGCS Member since 1997
I became a medical oncologist because I found tumor biology and the development of new treatments for cancer fascinating. When I was hired, the gynecologic oncologists needed a medical oncology liaison to be able to join the Gynecologic Oncology Group (GOG), and I loved working with patients with these tumor types. I also see breast cancer patients. I see patients with breast cancer and gyn malignancies in clinic and work closely with our developmental therapeutics group; much of my practice is devoted to developing and running clinical trials, from early to late stage. I chair the elderly working group (devoted to improving therapy for older patients) in the NRG. I direct the protocol office for the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology.
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